The Steal: A Cultural History of Shoplifting by Rachel Shteir has just been added to the library’s "new book shelf."
The book provides a well-researched study on this ancient crime, tracing its effect on literature, pop culture, politics, and business. While shoplifting is an unskilled, low-stakes form of theft, trifling by definition and a form of amateurism, it costs retailers billions of dollars a year in losses. Through interviews with scores of shoplifters and psychiatric experts, the author explores the reasons why people shoplift and offers 3 interpretations of shoplifting: as a crime, as a disease, and as a political protest. She concludes that the way we treat shoplifters is ultimately a reflection of who we are as a society.