Subversive citizens

Power, agency and resistance in public services

Edited by Marian Barnes and David Prior

Subversive citizens
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Edited by Marian Barnes and David Prior

Distributed for Policy Press at the University of Bristol

248 pages
Cloth $89.95 ISBN: 9781847422088 Published July 2009 For sale in North and South America only
Many of the recent reforms in public services in the UK have been driven by the image of the 'responsible citizen' - the service user who does not only have rights to receive services but also has responsibilities for the delivery of policy outcomes. In this way, citizens' everyday conduct is shaped by governmental action, yet there is much evidence that both front-line staff in public services and the people who use them can sometimes act in ways that modify, disrupt or negate intended policy outcomes. "Subversive citizens" presents a highly original examination of how official policy objectives can be 'subverted' through the actions of staff and users. It discusses the role of public policy in the creation of 'good citizenship', such as making appropriate choices about what to eat and how much to save, to being an active participant in the local community. It also examines how the roles of service delivery staff have changed substantially, and how theories of 'power' and 'agency' are useful in analysing the engagement between public policies (and those employed to deliver them) and the citizens at whom they are targeted.The idea of subversive citizenship is explored through theoretical and empirical analyses by a range of prominent social researchers and will be of interest to students of social policy, sociology, criminology, politics and related disciplines, as well as policy makers involved in public services.
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
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