Critical Criminology

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Online ISSN: 1572-9877
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Cumulative adoption of compensation statutes, 1989–2022. This figure includes Washington, DC but does not include the federal compensation law
States with compensation statutes, 1989 versus 2022
Article
As the number of exonerations in the USA continues to grow, so does the need to address post-release challenges faced by those who experience wrongful conviction. Research has highlighted many challenges faced by exonerees after release, yet compensation and reentry services are often lacking. In this paper, we provide a content analysis of existing exoneree-compensation statutes. Using Westervelt and Cook’s (Crime Law Soc Change 53(3):259–275, 2010) conceptualization of the wrongly convicted as victims of state harm, we describe current policies, organizing our findings around what is good, what is bad, and what is left uncertain. We argue that during the reentry period, a time filled with extreme uncertainty, many existing laws remain inadequate and/or unclear. Rather than providing stability, existing laws often create an additional layer of uncertainty for exonerees seeking compensation and other reentry assistance as they try to rebuild their lives.
 
Article
The COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly impacted the operation of universities around the world. A transition to online platforms and remote forms of working as a consequence of national lockdown measures and campus closures has produced new labour challenges for academic faculty. This article makes use of 12 months of reporting from the academic trade press related to the experience of the pandemic in the UK higher education sector. Accounts published within Times Higher Education signpost the accelerating and accentuating effects of COVID-19 as it relates to universities’ neoliberalization; corporate managerialism within UK universities; and academic work precarization and work-based inequities.
 
Value-of-life hierarchy for level of risk deemed acceptable according to relative social and professional status
Article
Acceptable levels of risk exposure are calculated based on whom is at risk and how individuals in positions of power perceive the value of those at risk. This study examines how value-of-life decisions are experienced in a prison labor program. Data come from interviews with 21 adults in custody (AICs) at a forest work camp. The AICs’ narratives are compared to Oregon’s Occupational Safety and Health Standards (Oregon OSHA) for wildland firefighting that would be required if they were not incarcerated. Because incarcerated individuals are viewed as less valuable by those in power, are not considered employees, and have no legal recourse for safety standards, they are placed in more risky working environments than non-incarcerated workers.
 
Co-Constitutive, Intra-Active Material-Discursive Practices
Performative Speech Act: Loci of Lines of Continuous Variation
Article
Advocated is an engagement with the new sciences (quantum mechanics, holography) that challenge Newtonian ontologies. Alternative concepts are introduced suggesting an interconnected, relational, processual, and emergent ontology. Human agency is brought back in the form of an inter- and intra-subjective co-constituted agent, schema QD. Specific applications in criminology are to assemblage theory, cognitive decision-making, methodology, and forms of social control (criminal, restorative, transformative justice).
 
Article
As Australian imprisonment and recidivism rates continue to rise, it is increasingly important to better understand how to support “returning citizens” to adequately prepare them for post-release life. Using a case study approach focused on service provider perspectives, this article examines the consequences of removing a transitional accommodation support service on service providers and returning citizens. Participants highlighted significant consequences, such as: gaps in services; lack of support and housing; persons remaining in the system unnecessarily; persons being released without transitional support or accommodation; health implications; loss of relationships and trust; and suicide of returned citizens. Drawing on critical criminological theory, we argue that the most significant consequence was the loss of “floating support”—which involves a case worker who brokers support between agencies working with a single client—that was integrated into the program. Study findings suggest serious consequences of government decisions to defund programs in this sector.
 
Article
Green criminology is grounded in debates regarding the ethics, legality, and reality of harms vis-à-vis the lives of non-human animals and the environment. The complex, uncertain, and ambiguous nature of these harms reveals the need for a more holistic approach: one that more firmly ties together social and ecological systems. In this paper, key aspects of systems thinking (e.g., leverage points) are outlined to illustrate the value of a systems-based approach. While not completely absent from green criminology literature, systems thinking offers a well-spring of underutilized ideas, concepts, theories, and frameworks that warrant further attention. A systems-based approach to green criminology is presented as a means to (re)imagine, (re)define, (re)examine, and respond to environmental harms.
 
Post 1960s Racial Control in Schools
Article
Beginning in the 1990s, scholars have been attuned to the ways that punitive frameworks within criminal justice institutions have been diffused to U.S. schools, often characterizing this trend as the “schools-to-jails” pathway and the criminalization of U.S. students. Looking at empirical trends, researchers have consistently found that schools primarily serving students of color are the most likely schools to rely on harsh, punitive practices. To explain these trends, scholars have tended to argue that these empirical findings support the racial threat perspective (Blalock 1967). We argue that racial threat theory is inadequate to fully understand racial disparities in school punishment trends. Relying on insights from critical race theory (CRT), we offer a racial control perspective that can explain racial disparities in school punishment in the U.S.
 
Fringe economist Dr. Gaddis and Detective Dumas discuss the human sacrifice that the economic system takes and how people still believe it is just and fair despite evidence to the contrary (The Black Monday Murders, Issue #4)
Operative in the secret cabal, Victor Eresko, spontaneously murders his own defense attorney using mind control, in order to show Detective Dumas the magical and demonic power manifest in the cabal (The Black Monday Murders, Issue #3)
The Matriarch of the quasi-Christian denomination, serving as the spiritual foundation of the secret economic cabal, delivers a sermon at the death of an elite member in front of representatives of its cooperating entities (The Black Monday Murders, Issue #4)
Article
The past few decades have witnessed unprecedented global economic catastrophes that exacerbated pre-existing socioeconomic inequalities. Although many scholars have attributed the resulting social harms to the failures of neoliberal capitalism—and recognize it as criminogenic—the logics upholding the economic order continue to hold sway among the public. Given that these logics are commonly reinforced through media and popular culture narratives, in this paper we explore how economic inequalities are portrayed in American comic books. We employ a thematic analysis of comic book depictions of mass economic destruction and economic inequality from the financial crisis of 2008 through the Occupy Wall Street movement to the more recent characterization of a post-capitalist existence under the throes of a global plutocracy. In doing so we recognize the potential for re-imagining alternatives to neoliberal capitalism, taking a critical criminological lens to the comic books. We then place The Black Monday Murders, a culmination of portrayals of economic inequality and related violence, in the context of more mainstream comic book depictions and discuss how this particular work exemplifies a rising theme in comics—a purported trade-off between global capitalism and human life, a discussion point that explicitly entered American public discourse during the coronavirus pandemic.
 
Article
The southern island of Tasmania is renowned for being the last Australian state to decriminalise homosexuality in 1997. Twenty years after the repeal of these laws, the state parliament of Tasmania passed legislation introducing an expungement scheme for historical homosexual convictions and delivered an apology for their harms. In this article, we draw upon theories of sexual citizenship to develop a critical place-based analysis of the Tasmanian apology that is attentive to the specificities of the region’s political, social, and cultural context. We argue that the parliament’s attempts to redefine the boundaries of sexual belonging through apology and expungement entail new forms of erasure, exclusion and policing. The limits of the apology’s liberal discourse of progress are foretold by several tendencies within its narration, including: the persistent impulse to erase both past records of the law’s violence and future LGBTQIA + identities; assumptions of sexual essentialism and biological determinism; and the uneasy demarcation of il/legal sexual practices, which reasserts the state’s authority to govern sexuality through recourse to the criminal law. Our analysis highlights the need for more place-based analysis of emergent modes of sexual governance within queer criminology and for further research into the material benefits, if any, that apologies and expungement schemes provide to those affected.
 
Article
In the original publication of the article, under the Introduction, the word “with” in the sentence “But whereas Park's enthusiasm for participant-observation preceded sustained attention to research methods training, the "classic" studies would also become known as exemplars of the cavalier methods and analytical artlessness with which many scholars have critiqued the Chicago School." is corrected as “for”.
 
Article
Immigrant victims of intimate partner violence (IPV) are often isolated from family and friends. This article uses informant accounts of IPV survivors to explore guardianship—a key concept of routine activities theory—that helps explain the risk of victimization. The concept of guardianship is helpful in understanding immigrant women’s needs and concerns and provides a framework to consider what might affect guardians’ capability in the context of immigrant women suffering IPV. The survivors’ accounts illustrate that the incapability of discouraging the crime might be related to hierarchical and unequal societal conditions for women, the complexity of immigrant women’s circumstances, victims’ bonds with perpetrators and personal guardians, as well as social and cultural norms related to IPV.
 
Article
This article challenges a tendency prominent in critical theory—one that holds that being “vague and strange” constitute qualities of life opposed to the grid-like systems of coercive control intrinsic to the operation of modern power regimes which, by their ascriptive nature, are compelled to suppress all life which exhibits these traits. Consequently, vagueness represents not only the antithesis of modern power, but a source of resistance against it. This article contests this assumption by exploring the vague regimes of power (which, following William Burroughs, we call “interzones”), which also exist within the fabric of the administered order. The article examines how these interzones function and explores two incarnations: zones of entrapment and zones of impunity.
 
Article
This article examines some aspects of the operation of universities under neoliberalism in Canada and the USA. It begins with a short overview of neoliberalism’s impact on higher education, subsequently turning to a discussion of some of the defining characteristics of the twenty-first century neoliberal university. Particular attention is paid to an ethos of corporate managerialism amongst university administrators and how that is manifested in the intersecting strategies of privatisation, monetisation, resource reallocation and the subtle regulation of faculty. Following an exploration of some claims-making about the instrumentalism of higher education, the article highlights the shifting narratives that emanate from universities’ communications and strategic planning offices. Paying particular attention to contemporary universities’ peculiar brand of progressive neoliberalism, the article concludes with an analysis of the appropriation of social justice in service of undergraduate recruitment.
 
Article
In an era of neoliberal capitalism, public funding to higher education has increasingly been subject to austerity measures that, based on cost–benefit analyses, have resulted in privatization, tuition hikes, outsourcing, and program, staff, and pay cuts. Official rationales for such measures center on cost effectiveness as well as institutional health and efficiency, yet the elephant in the room remains: that of continued financial and institutional support of college athletics. Originally devised to be supplemental to academic programs, university sports have expanded into revenue generating systems of mass entertainment becoming institutional vehicles for the potential acquisition of status and money. Yet, the majority of US colleges report that their athletic programs operate at a financial loss. Here, drawing on Thompson’s (2005: 23) conceptualization of neoliberalism as an “ethic, a set of political imperatives, and a cultural logic,” the protection of college athletics over academics will be further unpacked, paying specific attention to institutional priorities where the continuation of athletic spending on ‘big sports’ is considered sacrosanct.
 
Article
These research notes explore the idea of comparing executions in the United States (US) to executions undertaken by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Is it possible that America's ostensibly rational, formal, and "clinical" death penalty is more painful for its victims than ISIS victims? I investigate this question by considering the suffering caused by the death penalty in the US, making some informed speculations about ISIS executions, discussing execution in two influential Islamic nations, and observing some ironies these topic raise about the rule of law and capital punishment. My goal with these notes is to spur interest in comparative research on state violence and the death penalty.
 
Article
The ‘revolving doors’ phenomenon is the name given to the movement of individuals from public office to private companies and vice versa. It is believed that this phenomenon impacts the decision-making process to the detriment of the public interest. While it has largely been framed as a corrupt practice, this research seeks to explore it as a form of state-corporate crime by employing the case study of the Spanish government and the fossil fuel industry. The study finds that the explored case of revolving doors causes harm by driving social and economic instability and climate inaction and proposes the creation of a 'state-capture corporate crime'. Overall, the paper highlights the need to broaden the revolving doors and state-corporate crime concepts to allow its inclusion in the criminological agenda.
 
Article
This article challenges state-sponsored violence in Australia by exploring the experiences of young Indigenous people in youth detention and refugees in immigration detention in Australia as a form of living death. This article examines how this living death manifests by qualitatively analysing publicly accessible first-hand accounts from Indigenous young people about their experiences of youth imprisonment and from refugees about their experiences of immigration detention onshore and offshore. The findings suggest that when necropower and disciplinary power intersect four overlapping expressions of violence emerge: structural violence, epistemic violence, physical violence and brutality, and disciplinary violence. It is the complex overlapping of these multiple forms of harm that creates an experience of living death. In privileging the voices of young Indigenous people and refugees, this article also recognises their continued refusal of past and present colonial structures and the associated violence of carceral spaces.
 
Article
This article explores how the concepts of strucutral violence and cultural violence can explain the institutionalization and normalization of violence in children’s lives in Iran, including the use of the death penalty, thereby providing a mechanism through which such violence can be challenged. The paper reflects on how an alternative to execution, the payment of blood money, diyah, mitigates but does not eradicate harms caused to child offenders convicted of Qesas offenses and how diyah is used by Iranian authorities to avoid fulfilling their legal obligations to children who offend. The article argues that eradicating child execution and the payment of blood money is dependent on challenging the structural violence that is embedded within Iran’s legal structures and it reflects on recent improvements in the legal system.
 
Article
This article considers the diverse use of the concept of criminalization in criminological and socio-legal analyses, the meanings attached to it, and the differentiated modes and manifestations of the processes of criminalization in the United Kingdom. It draws together the contributions of both disciplines (criminology and socio-legal studies) to extend understanding and theorization of the concept of criminalization, and it applies them to antisocial behavior legislation and unemployment policy concerning young people. The article identifies three distinctive modes of criminalization—illegalizing, impelling and imputing—through which the criminalization of targeted young people is realized. The article argues that criminological assessments and theorizations of criminalization and assessments developed in socio-legal studies have largely developed independently. It considers the prospects for a trans-disciplinary approach to criminalization in theory and in practice that would attempt to build on complementarities between the critiques developed by both disciplines, and it identifies possibilities for synthesizing their insights.
 
Types of penal trajectories in the swiss juvenile penal chain
Article
This article analyzes juvenile delinquency through the concept of “gender projects.” It argues that delinquency makes the embodiment of specific masculinities and femininities possible, and thereby contributes to “gender achievement” (or “gender accomplishment”). Drawing on in-depth interviews conducted with Swiss juvenile offenders and using Raewyn Connell’s (1987, 1995) notion of “hegemonic masculinity,” this article examines “gender projects” that boys and girls pursue through a variety of offenses and trajectories in the criminal justice system. By inscribing the youth’s delinquent trajectories in social space and by paying attention to the intersection of power relations they face, this article discusses how delinquency can be a tactic to sustain, produce or overcome gender hegemony.
 
Article
The concept of organic resistance has stood as a cornerstone of critical social science for decades. Countless authors have claimed that minor acts of “transgression” should be interpreted as indicators of a proto-revolutionary drive among the marginalized to fight oppressive power. Here, we argue that critical scholars must jettison such baseless idealism and accept the huge amount of work needed to create within people a desire for genuine change. Post-1968 liberal capitalism has proven itself, time and again, able to integrate dissent and dissatisfaction into its project of continuous self-revolution. To move forward, we must accept a regrettable reality: most marginalized citizens dream not of overthrowing the system, but of achieving a degree of security and success within the system as it stands. If critical criminology is to continue to shed new light upon the huge problems we face, the lives of our most marginalized citizens must be represented with a greater degree of honesty.
 
Article
At times of global unrest and the emergence of a wide range of protest movements, recent intra-disciplinary criminological debates on the potentials and limits of resistance suggest a paradoxical trend. Critical criminologists—in particular, those associated with the ultra-realist perspective—have become increasingly skeptical of the idea of “resistance,” itself. In the context of these discussions, scholars have resorted to dismissing oppositional activities—including social movements and their different forms of protest—that are both intended and recognized as resistance . In my contribution to this debate, and in response to Jeff Ferrell’s (2019) article, “In Defense of Resistance,” I provide a critical reflection on the analysis of social movements in both ultra-realist and cultural criminological scholarship. Drawing from my ethnographic research with the (post-)Occupy movement in the United States, I argue that the dismissive reading of social movements’ resistance and the calls for stronger political leadership are the result of a narrow analytical lens applied to movements, their temporalities, and their historical context(s). In addition, I contend that the harsh criticism of social movements by ultra-realists connects to the aim of developing an intellectual leadership concerned with informing social movement practice and strategy “from above.” Here, as I maintain, the theory and practice of militant research, or militancia de investigación , as per the Colectivo Situaciones, challenges this understanding of intellectual leadership. The insights provided by radical collective knowledge production in social movements, and their critique of the institutional frameworks of the neoliberal university, allow for a critical reflection on the role of academia in resistance. This critical reflection can generate possibilities for social movements’ knowledge and radical imaginations to influence academic theorizing.
 
Article
In his article, “In Defense of Resistance,” Ferrell (2019) argues for the importance and centrality of the study of everyday and emergent acts of resistance to unjust power and authority. In my response, I contend that by failing to position contemporary resistance within a coherent theory of the production and reproduction of real life under capitalism, support for free-floating forms of resistance may serve to legitimize and strengthen the status quo, rather than challenge it. Through a Marxist lens, I call for a renewed criminological focus on: (1) the criminogenic nature of capitalism and its structures of exploitation of people and the environment; (2) class struggle and the possibility of a post-capitalist society based on an eco-socialist mode of production; and, (3) the possible consequences of not moving beyond capitalism in the twenty-first century.
 
Article
This article revisits the concept of relative deprivation and asks whether it is still useful for criminology. The article traces the way relative deprivation has been used in the past to understand crime and how it has connections to other, more recent, additions to debates on social justice. I argue that relative deprivation has disappeared even in the place that it had become the key explanation for crime—left realism. In so doing, I explore the resurrection of left realism in criminology—what I refer to as “post-millennial left realism”—first, by those who were associated with it originally, and then with Hall and Winlow’s (2015, 2017) shift in emphasis to what they term “ultra-realism.” I maintain that relative deprivation is still a powerful concept for bridging several related areas that should still be central to the concerns of criminology—in part, because it is still a major concern in popular social science and social psychology. Why has it disappeared in criminology? I present an argument that suggests that the absence of certain research methods, such as ethnographic and qualitative or small-scale survey methods, has impoverished our understanding of the lived reality of people experiencing the social transformations of a networked, precarious society. The massive polarization and disruption in politics and social discourse, as well as the worldwide economic, public health, and social transformations (ranging from the #MeToo and Black Lives Matter protests to the COVID-19 global pandemic) have demonstrated the continued relevance and analytical power that relative deprivation, in its elaborated form, brings to questions of crime and justice.
 
Article
The rapid pace of cannabis legalization in North America has provoked a backlash that is predictable and discouraging. The New Prohibitionists, distinct but related to their predecessors, the Old Prohibitionsists, have offered scholarship rife with conceptual errors, methodological flaws, and practical oversights. While their advice would likely hasten that which they seek to decrease, they overlook the costs of returning to practices associated with prohibition. To counter simplistic research interpretations and ill-considered policy, we present a critically informed research program on cannabis and crime based on previous scholarship. Our work is designed to apply replacement discourse and refocus research to withstand the tendency for justice systems to subvert, rather than embrace, reform. Cannabis legalization has been decades in the making and serious questions remain for proponents, opponents, and policymakers. Society, however, will be far worse off if the mistakes of reefer madness are repeated.
 
Article
This study explored the perceptions of incarcerated women, housed in prison nursery units in three states, of the effects of the nursery units on their parenting and well-being, as well as their views on the potential long-term effects on their recidivism. In-depth interviews were conducted with nursery-participant women offenders in Illinois, Indiana, and Nebraska in order (1) to learn more about the women’s experience of giving birth to and raising a child in prison; and (2) to understand their perceptions of how this experience might impact their parental and life choices post-release. The interviews revealed that the women believed the mother–child attachment and bonding while in prison influenced their growth and development in a positive way, and enhanced their mothering abilities. The women also indicated that they felt empowered and more effective in their parenting role due to the gender-responsive nursery programs and that program implementation and design impacted their perspective of program effectiveness. The implications for further policy recommendations are discussed.
 
Article
This article describes the ways in which the formerly incarcerated participants understand “hustling” and the “hustle.” Based on ethnographic fieldwork conducted at Second Chance, a New York metropolitan area agency that serves formerly incarcerated persons and those who have had police contact, this article attempts to situate “hustling” within the carceral state. “Hustling” has a range of meanings. It is a form of labor performed to acquire material goods—the ability to “hustle” functions as a marker of an approved masculinity. “Hustling” also reflects power relations and can serve as a framework of reference. The participants in the study were routinely “hustled,” and they expressed concern that they were being “hustled” in the context of the programming offered at Second Chance. The article concludes with a discussion of the implications of the findings for reentry programming.
 
The path model of the relationship between deviant populations, social disorder, and serious crime
The path model of how banishment is designed to inhibit social disorder and serious crime
Super controllers and crime.
Source: Sampson et al. (2010)
Article
The combining of administrative, civil, and criminal law has broadened modern crime control mechanisms and greatly increased the legal authority and discretion of law enforcement officers. Such legal hybridity has contributed specifically to the pervasiveness of spatial regulatory practices (or spatial remedies), such as the use of banishment policies and civil gang injunctions (CGIs), by police in urban centers. While banishment policies and CGIs exemplify the reliance on legal hybridity to manage “deviant” populations spatially, empirical evidence suggests that spatial remedies guided by the theoretical underpinnings of deterrence and broken windows perspectives are not efficacious at predicting observed behavioral changes. We argue for a critical approach to understanding disobedience to spatial remedies, suggesting that routine activities theory is an appropriate framework to expose why these mechanisms fail to generate robust compliance or remedy problem areas.
 
Article
This article advances a theoretical perspective on violent crime, using interviews with male prisoners in Italy who had perpetrated violence. By drawing on Athens’ (1992, 1997, 2007, 2017) “radical interactionism,” we propose the concept of “violent cosmology” in order to counter linear explanations of cause and effect. In an effort to complement narrative criminologists’ contributions, we seek to recognize and understand the dimensions of meaning that are accessed by social actors when they prepare and carry out a violent act, exploring the psycho-social processes that animate violent social experiences from the perspectives of perpetrators. Specifically, we suggest that a “radical interactionist” approach, in dialogue with narrative criminology, can help (1) illuminate the sources of perpetrators’ narratives; (2) explore the interplay between individuals and social structures; and (3) investigate ambiguities in the narratives of violent actors. Finally, we examine how enhancing the reflexivity of violent actors and recognizing the specificity and integrity of their lives and social experiences is a necessary precondition for understanding violent crime.
 
STARS member sacrifices himself to save his comrade from a monstrous shark (RE1-HD)
The monstrous agent Rachel Foley (RE:R)
Abandoned squad cars and dead officers indicating law enforcement assistance in unavailable (RE2)
Article
The current analysis takes seriously representations of the police throughout the Resident Evil series, a hallmark horror game franchise. Drawing from both cultural criminology and gothic criminology, this study involves a grounded theory-based analysis of representations of the police throughout the series, considering them to be culturally salient indicators of attitudes, beliefs, and anxieties concerning police and related institutions of social control in both the USA and Japan. Results of this analysis indicate that the series portrays the police in two ways: (1) stalwart or professional and capable protectors championing good and (2) fallible or corruptible and inadequate. The study interprets these themes through prior research on police occupational culture and identity as well as the American and Japanese historical contexts in which the series emerged, developed, and gained popularity. The analysis also considers how the subversion of the police as protectors in Resident Evil reflects deep seated anxieties about modern policing while also celebrating police violence.
 
Article
One of the most enduring debates in the study of the evolution of criminal justice policy in the United States concerns the role of public opinion. Two viewpoints have thus far dominated pertinent scholarship, with one claiming that criminal justice policy has been genuinely responsive to changes in public opinion, and the other suggesting that incumbent administrations have simulated responsiveness to public attitudes toward criminal justice which they strategically molded themselves. Drawing in part on political science literature that has as yet been little used within criminology, this article seeks to advance an alternative viewpoint. We argue that, in the context of American criminal justice policy since the 1970s, political responsiveness to public opinion has been neither genuine nor so much simulated as it has been what political scientists describe as “segmented”—that is, geared toward specific subgroups whose views are privileged for electoral reasons. Our analysis singles out for scrutiny the crucial period between the mid-1980s and mid-1990s and the alignment of criminal justice policymaking during those years with preferences held and promoted by lobby groups with strong financial incentives at the expense of disadvantaged minorities. In so doing, we combine foci and insights that have typically been accorded discrete consideration in prior critical scholarship, which allows us to demonstrate the aggregate effect that different lobbying activities can have on criminal justice, whether directly and by design or indirectly and by default.
 
Complaints, as recorded by the Office of Correctional Investigator 2009–2020. *In certain years (2015–16, 2016–17) complaints related to Food Services were divided between two different categories—one specific to Food Services, and another, a subsection on Food Services under Conditions of Confinement. In years where both categories appeared, the total number is included from both
Article
Centering the perspectives and lived experiences of incarcerated persons, this article considers the ways food is used as a tool and site of contestation and possibility within federal prisons in Canada. Focusing specifically on the implementation of and resistance to the Food Services Modernization Initiative, I explore food as “contested terrain” within carceral systems, making visible a range of tactics of resistance employed by incarcerated persons, from testimonials and official complaints to direct collective action. In analyzing these actions and narratives, I reflect on the importance of both food justice and prisoner justice to transforming carceral food systems and call for greater acknowledgment of carceral food systems within food movement discourses and campaigns.
 
Article
The widespread adoption of body-worn cameras (BWC) began amid public pressure for police accountability following a series of highly publicized use-of-force incidents. Extant BWC research primarily associates the concept of police accountability with the prevalence of police misconduct alone, often focusing on quantitative changes in citizen complaints and use-of-force reports. However, perceptions of accountability following unjustified use-of-force incidents are shaped not only by the prevalence of police misconduct, but also by the broader systemic response, including the way in which the mechanisms of arrest, prosecution, and sentencing are applied to unjust police behavior. This article proposes a systems approach to police accountability in the context of BWCs. Such an approach considers the outcomes of police, prosecution, court, and corrections agencies as equally important to the achievement of accountability. To understand the impact of BWCs on police accountability, their effect on the entire criminal justice system should be considered.
 
Theoretical model of NCST and bisexual and pansexual stigma with model numbers to be examined in Tables 2 and 3
Percentage of bisexual and pansexual women reporting gender-based violence and harassment
Article
Recent research suggests that bisexual women may be at high risk for victimization due to their non-monosexual identities, yet it is unclear whether pansexual women, who also have non-monosexual identities, may be at high risk for victimization as well. In the current study, data from a sample of adults in the United States, between the ages of eighteen and sixty-four and stratified by census categories of age, gender, race/ethnicity and census region collected from lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) online panelists (n = 1559), were utilized to investigate bisexual (n = 358) and pansexual (n = 45) women’s victimization through a test of Norm-Centered Stigma Theory with a theoretical focus on heteronormativity and intersecting experiences with social power (gender and sexuality) (Worthen 2020). Three notable findings emerged. First, pansexual women experienced higher levels of harassment when compared to bisexual women. Second, both being pansexual and being a pansexual woman significantly increased the odds of enduring violence and harassment. Third, being a bisexual woman decreased the odds of experiencing violence and was not statistically significantly related to harassment. Overall, results suggest that pansexual women may have especially unique experiences that put them at risk for victimization and demonstrate the importance of specifically examining pansexual women’s experiences as separate from others. A discussion of the contributions and limitations of quantitative analyses in critical criminology, in general, and queer criminology, in particular, is also provided. Because this study is the first to highlight the intersecting experiences of pansexual women and their elevated risk of violence and harassment, the findings provide a much-needed first step into working toward developing a deeper understanding of pansexual people’s victimization. In addition, the results demonstrate the need for future research across multiple methods of investigation, including qualitative, quantitative, and mixed-methods approaches to best understand these relationships.
 
Article
Information on the criminal causes and effects of the climate crisis has the potential to shape public understanding of the problem, influence behavior(s), and prompt policy decisions. This article examines the mediated representation of climate change and crime in the United States to understand whether and how these issues are being portrayed. Using a content analysis of top online media stories in 2018, we found that there is a paucity of coverage on the nexus of climate change and crime. The few stories that did discuss the subject were often oversimplified and showed a lack of critical and informative coverage of the subject. Media coverage of climate change and crime needs more attention. This means that social scientists should dedicate more time to this research and to creating awareness around the climate change-social harm nexus. It also requires that social scientists are actively included in the discussions of the social effects of climate change.
 
Article
This article reports the results of a research study which sought to understand how formerly incarcerated Black and Brown men make sense of their experience of prison rehabilitation and the desistance process—one that entails rebuilding individual identity as a reformed individual. Drawing on life histories and photo-elicitation interviews with twenty-three formerly incarcerated Black and Brown men, this study sought to assess the extent to which knowledge of Black history matters in building identity. This article highlights two narrative forms that emerged from the men’s responses to photographs of famous Black leaders, which helps further our understanding of desistance as a relational process of creating collective belonging in prosocial racialized communities. The first is the retrospective narrative of prison organizing. This refers to narrative identities that emerged as the participants talked about taking on leadership and organizational roles while incarcerated, thus creating communities of meaning around understanding the self through Black history. The second is the prospective narrative of togetherness, where the participants’ narrative identities expressed a longing for a sense of togetherness (or wanting to belong)—achieved through becoming individual agents of social change. This article provides new possibilities for understanding desistance as a collective process, as well as recommendations for using photo-elicitation as a narrative intervention.
 
Article
Heritage crime has to date received little criminological interest relative to other topics within the discipline. Therefore, the current literature on the area is limited. Victims of heritage crime are significantly under-represented in the current body of literature, and empirical research on heritage crime and victimisation is lacking; as is any theoretical development of the phenomenon. This article makes small steps towards addressing some of the substantial gaps relating to heritage crime victimisation in presenting the first typology of heritage crime victims. This typology is the result of research conducted across England and Wales with a sample of heritage practitioners, police officers, and heritage crime victims. Based on the research conducted, we hope to contribute towards the body of police and heritage practitioner knowledge concerning victims of heritage crime. The typology may, with further research, be applied or adapted to include heritage crime victims across the globe.
 
Article
This article provides a duoethnographic reflection of the authors’ experiences as Asian American women who work in the field of criminology and criminal justice. As two faculty members who actively and loudly contradict notions of quiet, submissive Asian women (or, more specifically, shout “Fuck you!” at these racist tropes), we recognize that while our mere existence in academia disrupts the model minority myth, we have also benefitted from the myth and our proximity to whiteness. As such, we aim to describe the ways in which we have navigated our own identities in interactions with those at the predominantly white institutions where we are/have been employed. Specifically, we share our experiences and negative repercussions related to student mentorship, institutional and organizational biases, and social justice work. We conclude with a discussion of recommendations and advice for faculty and students, accomplices, and administrators based on our shared vision of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
 
Article
Research on gangs and urban communities has often focused on gang members’ alleged fatalism and corresponding lack of aspirations for the future. Relatedly, theories and research regarded as criminological canon can lead to assumptions and misrepresentations that are damaging and dehumanizing. Using examples from an interview-based and partially ethnographic study with gay and bisexual male gang members, I explore their goals for the future, in depth and in context. These men had detailed, specific, and normative goals, such as gaining fulfilling employment, educational attainment, and healthy families, as well as existential goals. Their well-formulated goals demonstrate how cultural messages and mainstream research assumptions can prime gang researchers to overlook or misinterpret our participants’ own motives and meanings. This can be overcome by including gang-involved study participants in the research process and adopting an ethical standpoint of pursuing contextualized, humanistic portrayals of gang-involved people.
 
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Gangs impact everyday life and politics across much of the world, yet the literature on gang disengagement—the process whereby people move on from the gang life—is mostly limited to the United States and Europe. In El Salvador, following 30 years of gang wars and a 20-year war on gangs, gang members face severe restrictions from both their gangs and wider society to disengage. Ultimately, this undermines the prospects not only for gang members to remake their lives, but for sustaining reductions in armed violence and addressing a broader set of pressing social issues. Theoretically, I propose a nested, multi-level analysis of gang disengagement, attentive to the interactions between individual, gang-organizational, and social conditions that enable and constrain processes of gang disengagement. Empirically, I employ this framework to scrutinize the evolution of gangs and gang disengagement in El Salvador, and the political solutions necessary for large-scale disengagement moving forward.
 
Conceptual model of life course criminalization
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Scholars have documented how violence, criminalization, and other forms of control impact the life trajectories of criminalized women. Less research exists on the ways that processes of criminalization affect the health of mothers across the life course. This study examines how the legal constructions of criminalized labels such as gang affiliation, are a process of long-term violence and threat of violence and second, how short and long-term criminalization affects family health–what I refer to as life course criminalization. This qualitative study is based on photo elicitation life history testimonios with 13 gang affiliated, system-impacted Chicana/Latina mothers from South Central Los Angeles, California and connects life course theory with feminist abolitionist decolonial perspectives. It documents how crises perpetuated by multi-institutional violence and other forms of violence influence relations between legal, social, and health related experiences for system-impacted mothers and their families. Through their testimonios they show the intergenerational mechanisms that connect the body’s health, family surveillance, and criminalization processes to survival, and spiritual resistance.
 
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In the following essay, I describe how one of the most cited but least analyzed texts in gang studies, Frederic Thrasher's The Gang (1927), has informed my approach to the analysis of gang communities. While many scholars have highlighted the limitations of Thrasher's work, I argue that one might read this text differently and, in my case, speculatively. I do this by moving away from privileging the text's most sociologically-polished elements and look instead to its many undertheorized speculations and unrealized claims which other thinkers from other disciplines have taken up in varying ways. As such, I ask how Thrasher's claim that "the gang" emerges as both an expression of and an outlet for the creative reimagination of interstitial space in the modern city is enriched by Walter Benjamin's writings on temporality, materiality, and childhood. I argue that a speculative reading of The Gang that does not discipline Thrasher's most profound insights but rather thinks with their disciplinary incompatibility and helps illuminate the generative inscrutability of The Gang, revealing it as an experiment in sociological empiricism.
 
Top-cited authors
David R. Goyes
  • University of Oslo
David Whyte
  • Queen Mary, University of London
Tanya Wyatt
  • Northumbria University
Nigel South
  • University of Essex
Michael J. Lynch
  • University of South Florida