December 4, 2013 | CUNY Graduate Center
William (Jock) Young, distinguished professor of criminal justice and sociology, died on November 16, 2013, after a long illness. A valued colleague and celebrated scholar, Professor Young taught classes at the GC up to his final weeks.
A native Briton, Young was a criminal theorist of global influence; before joining the Graduate Center in 2004, he was head of the Centre for Criminology and Professor of Sociology at the University of Middlesex (UK). His early work examined drug use in the UK and created the intellectual concept of “moral panics,” a term now widely used. The research, published as The Drugtakers: The Social Meaning of Drug Use (1971), established his credentials as a critical criminologist. His coauthored volume The New Criminology: For a Social Theory of Deviance (1973) remains a milestone in criminology literature.
Young’s interest in the intersection of culture and criminology was reflected in his coauthorship of Cultural Criminology: An Invitation (2008), which was later awarded the Distinguished Book Award from the American Society of Criminology. Most recently, he completed a trilogy concerning social life and sociological research: The Exclusive Society (1999), The Vertigo of Late Modernity (2007), and The Criminological Imagination (2011). His writing has been translated into eleven languages.
Young was honored by the American Society of Criminology (2008, 2009, and 2011) and received the 2012 Award for Outstanding Achievement from the British Society of Criminology. At the time, the British Journal of Criminology described him as a “leading light in radical criminology and the sociology of deviance.”