The production and governance of race in licensing decisions: the initial findings of an ethnographic researcher exploring race at night in ‘Greenshire’

Nikhaela Wicks

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Abstract

Drawing from interviews and observations with police licensing managers and town licensing officers, this paper highlights how race is produced and sustained in licensing decisions in ‘Greenshireʼ. Previous research has evidenced the disproportionate impact of the Licensing Act 2003 on racialised night time venues in ‘Southville’, London (Böse and Talbot, 2007, Talbot 2004). Building on this work, this paper explores how race is produced and governed in licensing decisions in a more provincial context. I consider the disparities between the objectives set out in the Licensing Act 2003 and what occurs in practice. I reveal how the licensing objectives are presented as objective and non-discriminatory and argue that this does not translate to licensing practice. I highlight how the racialised Other (Hall 1997) continues to be problematised in licensing decisions, reflected in the tentativeness around temporary event notices for ‘urban' nights and increased licensing conditions for pubs known for their Gypsy, Roma or Traveller clientele.
Original languageEnglish
Article number8
Number of pages6
JournalEntertainment and Sports Law Journal
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2019

Keywords

  • Policing
  • Nightlife
  • Night time economy
  • Race
  • Ethnicity

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