Introduction: Qualitative Research in Criminology


  • Michael Meuser TU Dortmund
  • Gabi Löschper Universität Hamburg



deviance, social control, crime, labeling approach, sociology of knowledge


This paper begins with a brief overview of research traditions that paved the way for qualitative methods in criminological research (labeling approach and critical criminology). In addition, it outlines recent trends in qualitative criminology. The potentials and the limits of a perspective of "understanding from within" ("Verstehen") on deviance and social control are discussed. The contributions to the volume—examples of qualitative criminological research from German speaking countries—are introduced in reference to some current trends of conceptual and methodological discussions in criminology. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0201129


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Author Biographies

Michael Meuser, TU Dortmund

Michael MEUSER Dr. phil., is a lecturer for sociology at the University of Bremen, and an adjunct professor of sociology and research methods at the University of Siegen. Research interests: Sociology of gender relations, qualitative research methods, sociology of knowledge, political sociology.

Gabi Löschper, Universität Hamburg

Gabi LÖSCHPER teaches criminology in the postgraduate program of the University of Hamburg. Main research fields: legal psychology (esp. criminal justice system and court procedures), social construction of reality, violence, narrative analysis.



How to Cite

Meuser, M., & Löschper, G. (2002). Introduction: Qualitative Research in Criminology. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 3(1).