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The Consensus Myth In Criminal Justice Reform, Benjamin Levin Jan 2018

The Consensus Myth In Criminal Justice Reform, Benjamin Levin

Articles

It has become popular to identify a “consensus” on criminal justice reform, but how deep is that consensus, actually? This Article argues that the purported consensus is much more limited than it initially appears. Despite shared reformist vocabulary, the consensus rests on distinct critiques that identify different flaws and justify distinct policy solutions. The underlying disagreements transcend traditional left/right political divides and speak to deeper disputes about the state and the role of criminal law in society.

The Article maps two prevailing, but fundamentally distinct, critiques of criminal law: (1) the quantitative approach (what I call the “over” frame ...


Rethinking The Boundaries Of "Criminal Justice", Benjamin Levin Jan 2018

Rethinking The Boundaries Of "Criminal Justice", Benjamin Levin

Articles

This review of The New Criminal Justice Thinking (Sharon Dolovich & Alexandra Natapoff, eds.) tracks the shifting and uncertain contours of “criminal justice” as an object of study and critique.

Specifically, I trace two themes in the book:

(1) the uncertain boundaries of the “criminal justice system” as a web of laws, actors, and institutions; and

(2) the uncertain boundaries of “criminal justice thinking” as a universe of interdisciplinary scholarship, policy discourse, and public engagement.

I argue that these two themes speak to critically important questions about the nature of criminal justice scholarship and reform efforts. Without a firm understanding of what constitutes the “criminal justice system,” it is difficult to agree on the proper targets of critique or to determine what legal, social, and political problems are properly the province of “criminal justice thinking.” And, deciding which voices to accept and privilege in these ...


When Theory Met Practice: Distributional Analysis In Critical Criminal Law Theorizing, Aya Gruber Jan 2015

When Theory Met Practice: Distributional Analysis In Critical Criminal Law Theorizing, Aya Gruber

Articles

Progressive (critical race and feminist) theorizing on criminal law exists within an overarching American criminal law culture in which the U.S penal system has become a "peculiar institution" and a defining governance structure. Much of criminal law discourse is subject to a type of ideological capture in which it is natural to assume that criminalization is a valid, if not preferred, solution to social dysfunction. Accordingly, progressives’ primary concerns about harms to minority victims takes place in a political-legal context in which criminalization is the technique of addressing harm. In turn, progressive criminal law theorizing manifests some deep internal ...


A Distributive Theory Of Criminal Law, Aya Gruber Jan 2010

A Distributive Theory Of Criminal Law, Aya Gruber

Articles

In criminal law circles, the accepted wisdom is that there are two and only two true justifications of punishment-retributivism and utilitarianism. The multitude of moral claims about punishment may thus be reduced to two propositions: (1) punishment should be imposed because defendants deserve it, and (2) punishment should be imposed because it makes society safer. At the same time, most penal scholars notice the trend in criminal law to de-emphasize intent, centralize harm, and focus on victims, but they largely write off this trend as an irrational return to antiquated notions of vengeance. This Article asserts that there is in ...


The False Promise Of Retributive Proportionality, Aya Gruber Jan 2010

The False Promise Of Retributive Proportionality, Aya Gruber

Articles

No abstract provided.


Righting Victim Wrongs: Responding To Philosophical Criticisms Of The Nonspecific Victim Liability Defense, Aya Gruber Jan 2004

Righting Victim Wrongs: Responding To Philosophical Criticisms Of The Nonspecific Victim Liability Defense, Aya Gruber

Articles

Modern criminal law is intensely one-sided in its treatment of victims and defendants. Crime victims and criminal defendants do not enter the trial process on an equal moral footing. Rather, from the beginning victims are assumed blameless, truthful, and even beyond doubt, while defendants are guilty, not worthy of credence, and immoral. This one-sided view of victims, however, is a fiction. As any other people, victims differ in their characterizations. Some are indeed trustworthy, truthful, blameless and ultimately innocent. Others, however, are bad actors themselves, have memory failures, falsely identify, provoke, and even lie. Some victims are in fact, and ...


The American "Adversary System"?, William T. Pizzi Jan 1998

The American "Adversary System"?, William T. Pizzi

Articles

No abstract provided.


The Federal Coconspirator Exception: Action, Assertion, And Hearsay, Christopher B. Mueller Jan 1984

The Federal Coconspirator Exception: Action, Assertion, And Hearsay, Christopher B. Mueller

Articles

No abstract provided.


Assaults On The Exclusionary Rule: Good Faith Limitations And Damage Remedies, Pierre J. Schlag Jan 1982

Assaults On The Exclusionary Rule: Good Faith Limitations And Damage Remedies, Pierre J. Schlag

Articles

No abstract provided.