05-Oct-20 The Outsiders and Youth Justice

“When I stepped out into the bright sunlight from the darkness of the movie house, I had only two things on my mind: Paul Newman and a ride home” (Hinton, p.1) This opening line will resonate for many who read The Outsiders (London: Penguin Books, 2016; originally USA: Viking Penguin, 1967) as a teenager andContinue reading “05-Oct-20 The Outsiders and Youth Justice”

27-Sept-20 Marshals and Police

Like all significant social events, COVID-19 has its own lexicon of words and phrases that we find ourselves hearing and using – ‘test, track and trace’, ‘a V-shaped recovery’, ‘asymptomatic’, ‘lockdown’, ‘second spike’, and so on. One word doing the rounds currently is ‘marshal’. To ensure that the public are following social distancing rules, BorisContinue reading “27-Sept-20 Marshals and Police”

10-Aug-20 Abuse in Religious Organisations

On 5 August 2020, the BBC reported leaked excerpts from a forthcoming report by independent investigator Vicky Lawson-Brown into abuse of women and children within the ‘Jesus Army’ or ‘Jesus Fellowship’. Established in 1969 at a chapel in Northamptonshire, the Jesus Army grew quickly, drawing in the homeless and substance misusers, among others, to liveContinue reading “10-Aug-20 Abuse in Religious Organisations”

24-July-20 Achebe and retributive justice

My current read is Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (first published by William Heinemann, 1958 though my copy is Penguin, 2001). Born in 1930 in Nigeria, Achebe studied in London and worked for the BBC, later becoming Emeritus Professor of English at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. The book has a great back story.Continue reading “24-July-20 Achebe and retributive justice”

14-July-20 COVID-19 and Accountability

Initially there was scepticism from the UK Chief Medical Officer and his colleagues about the value of wearing face masks.  People might not wear them correctly, may become complacent and forget to prioritise handwashing and social distancing.  In the US, Trump said in April 2020 that he would not wear a mask and mocked hisContinue reading “14-July-20 COVID-19 and Accountability”

13-July-20 Capital Punishment and Victims

The BBC website reports this morning on the case of Daniel Lewis Lee who will be subject to the first federal execution in the United States in more than 17 years.  Lee and an accomplice were convicted of murdering three members of the same family. Two details stand out in the report.  First, the murdersContinue reading “13-July-20 Capital Punishment and Victims”

26-June-20 Lady Macbeth and Double Deviance

Lady Macbeth. […] Come, you spiritsThat tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here,And fill me from the crown to the toe top-fullOf direst cruelty! make thick my blood;Stop up the access and passage to remorse,That no compunctious visitings of natureShake my fell purpose, nor keep peace betweenThe effect and it! Come to my woman’s breasts,AndContinue reading “26-June-20 Lady Macbeth and Double Deviance”

22-June-20 Alfred Fagon, Policing and Race

Alfred Fagon was a Jamaican-born playwright who came to England in 1955 at the age of 18.  He worked on the railways and joined the army, where he became a boxing champion.  Leaving the army in 1962 to travel and sing calypso, Alfred settled in Bristol, learning the welding trade and starting to act part-timeContinue reading “22-June-20 Alfred Fagon, Policing and Race”

17-June-20 Interview with a Crown Court Judge

Today’s blog is an interview with a ‘Circuit Judge’ who acts as a Crown Court Judge in England and Wales.  The interview explores a typical day; route into the job; enabling justice for victims and defendants; and the impact of the COVID-lockdown.  My sincere thanks to the contributor for their time in preparing this. WhatContinue reading “17-June-20 Interview with a Crown Court Judge”

12-June-20 Solving Crimes

I have been reading Martha Gever’s chapter (reproduced in McLaughlin and Muncie, 2013) on the ‘spectacle of crime’ in relation to the American TV series CSI: Crime Series Investigation.  One phrase in particular set me thinking.  Gever talks of “…the flux of visual imagery that harnesses the quest for scientific truths to scenes of veryContinue reading “12-June-20 Solving Crimes”

8-June-20 The Impact of COVID-19 on Sex Workers

This was first published by the author on 8 June 2020 in LSE COVID-19 Social Policy, a blog by the London School of Economics and Political Science. In 2019, I co-authored a Home Office-commissioned report with colleagues at the University of Bristol on the nature and prevalence of prostitution and sex work in England andContinue reading “8-June-20 The Impact of COVID-19 on Sex Workers”

27-May-20 Words, Ideas, Harm

In my last post (Crimmigration 20-May-2020), I said that “a simple stroke of the bureaucratic pen” can create significant suffering. This suffering may ripple through lives and communities for some time, much of it undocumented. In my own research (working also with colleagues at the Centre for Gender and Violence Research), I record and seekContinue reading “27-May-20 Words, Ideas, Harm”