Crimes against morality
Carpenter, Belinda J. & Hayes, Sharon L. (2012) Crimes against morality. In Hayes, Hennessey & Prenzler, Tim (Eds.) An Introduction to Crime and Criminology (3rd ed.). Pearson Australia, Sydney NSW, pp. 141-154.
Administrators only | Request a copy from author
The purpose of this chapter is to discuss the relationship between crime and morality, with a specific focus on crimes against morality. While we argue that all crimes have a general moral basis, condemned as ‘wrong’ or ‘bad’ and proscribed by a society, there is a specific group of offences in modern democratic nations labelled ‘crimes against morality’. Included within this group are offences related to prostitution, pornography and homosexuality. What do these crimes have in common? Most clearly they tend to have a sexual basis and are often argued to do sexual harm, in both a moral and/or psychological sense, as well as physically. Conversely in some cases they are argued to be victimless crimes, especially when the acts occur between consenting adults. Finally, they are considered essentially private acts but they often occur, and are regulated, in the public domain. Most importantly, each of these crimes against morality has only relatively recently (i.e. in the past 150 years) become identified and regulated by the state as a criminal offence. First, we discuss philosophically the nexus between sex, crime and morality, especially with regard to the issue of prostitution. Second, we examine the relationship between public and private morality and how this dis¬tinction regulates licit and illicit sex in our society through the example of homosexuality. Finally we discuss the notion of sex as harm through the example of pornography.
Impact and interest:
Citation counts are sourced monthly from and citation databases.
These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.
Citations counts from theindexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.
|Item Type:||Book Chapter|
|Keywords:||homosexuality, prostitution, sex crimes, harm, morality|
|Subjects:||Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200)|
|Divisions:||Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Schools > School of Justice
|Deposited On:||11 Sep 2012 22:24|
|Last Modified:||23 Jun 2016 04:50|
Repository Staff Only: item control page