Histories of State Surveillance in Europe and Beyond

Chiara Fonio (Editor), Kees Boersma (Editor), Rosamunde Van Brakel (Editor), Pieter Wagenaar (Editor)

Research output: Book/ReportOther report


Does the development of new technology cause an increase in the level of surveillance used by central government? Is the growth in surveillance merely a reaction to terrorism, or a solution to crime control? Are there more structural roots for the increase in surveillance? This book attempts to find some answers to these questions by examining how governments have increased their use of surveillance technology. Focusing on a range of countries in Europe and beyond, this book demonstrates how government penetration into private citizens' lives was developing years before the ‘war on terrorism.’ It also aims to answer the question of whether central government actually has penetrated ever deeper into the lives of private citizens in various countries inside and outside of Europe, and whether citizens are protected against it, or have fought back. The main focus of the volume is on how surveillance has shaped the relationship between the citizen and the State. The contributors and editors of the volume look into the question of how central government came to intrude on citizens’ private lives from two perspectives: identification card systems and surveillance in post-authoritarian societies. Their aim is to present the heterogeneity of the European historical surveillance past in the hope that this might shed light on current trends. Essential reading for criminologists, sociologists and political scientists alike, this book provides some much-needed historical context on a highly topical issue.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages272
ISBN (Print)0415829461
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • europe
  • history
  • surveillance


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