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1. Lecture 2: The Creation of Crime?-How do we “create” crime? How do different kinds of texts represent crime? What do those representations reveal about the nature of crime? What do they leave hidden, distorted or unspoken?-Crime is ontologically real—that is, it exists truly -purpose of CJS is to get close to crime -Our theoretical approach to crime determines our practical response to it One theoretical Approach:-Borges Article: an astonishing view of the emotional, moral and social essence of murder -crime is real: yet every approach to it is an imperfective narrative. -McDowell Article: McDowell treats murder as if it were an abstract, mathematical entity or disease—but its not!**from here we can see how depending upon the approach, that although both narratives draw on the reality of homicide to tell a story, one gets closer to the actual of reality of murder, while one does not. Expressing how you approach crime determines the response to it -Wender’s article attempts to reveal what gets “lost in translation” when it comes to crime2. Lecture #3: The Tragedy of PowerWhat is the “tragedy of power” and how does it related to the relationshipamong crime, politics and justice?-Tragedy of Power: when you exercise power you are never going to get it right-even with the best intentions, political activity will mess up what it is set to accomplish as a set of political course -There is no way you can have a CSJ system that does not inflict harm or pain on people, or it wouldn’t be a CSJ-even with the best intentions there is no way of getting away from the violence—literally or figuratively -“He who lets himself in for politics, that is, for power and force as means, contracts with diabolical powers and for his action it is not true that good can followonly from good and evil from evil but that often the opposite is true.” (Weber, 123) -It is related to crime: -Because the tragedy of power allows judges and courts to inflict pain on individuals, individuals deter from committing crime knowing that pain is the likely outcome. -It is related to politics: -Because the political arena is an arena of pain and violence and there is no way to keep your hands clean of that aspect of the political realm -It is related to justice: -Because law inflicts pain to achieve justice (violence is the outcome of justice for some)3. Lecture #4: What is (the) Law? Why is it so important to understand different theories of law? How do these theories produce radically different practical outcomes? How can I decipher legal citations and look up court cases? -Legal Positivism: the validity of law derives solely from political power-Natural Law: the validly of law transcends (goes beyond) mere political power 4. Lecture #5: The Relationship between Law and Justice What is the practical relationship between written laws and unwritten social customs? How and why do legal decisions reflect unwritten social norms and values? •The main legal conflict in DeShaney is between formalism and activism•Formalism: Judges follow the "letter of the law," and make strict, literal, logical interpretations, even in the face of tragic consequences-the law does not have a whole lot of stretch--we cant stretch the law because we feel bad. We have to interpret the law for what it is literally-reading the letter of the law •Activism: Judges follow the "spirit of the law" and interpret the law in light of its supposed underlying intent-you cant just follow what the letter of the law is because times and values change. Can't just read what is on the page but need to stretch the law to consider things that weren't considered by people when they made the law-not every custom is a formal legal right, but custom is a powerful influence on the law -the act of crating boundaries excludes and includes and there’s no way around that -“persistence of custom” despite conviction of a citizen for pig owning, pigs remained in the city -laws and decisions mean different things to different social groups, and these meanings are subject to interpretation and debate -Hence it is difficult to identify in a single constant fact, “what the law means”5. Lecture #6: The Social and Political Roots of Law What is the relationship between law and political order? What are the practical implications of differing theories of the nature and role of law? How does the law enact different notions of sovereignty?-Rather than thinking about law as a fixed object, think of it as an arena of conflict where alternative social visions (different ideas about how people think the world should map out) contend, bargain and survive -these meanings are neither fixed nor certain -The law always exists in a given cultural context, which changes over time. Remember, society changes law and law changes society-Hobbes argues that law is the command of the sovereign (and that this is where it originates) -Hobbes argues that left to our own devices, it is not law and the state gets them to do what they would never do with their own self interest -Hobbes argues we need the sovereign so we don’t have a state of nature where people are individually seeking and violent because people left to their own devices wont do the right thing 6. Lecture #7: Law and Language How may law be understood as a form of language and rhetoric, and as a living form of social discourse?How are law and language related?-helps with the interpretation of law-law fundamentally involves reading, speaking and writing-without language there is no law -James Boyd: is saying law is related to custom and culture. -The law is just not some bland set of rules, it is an active process through which community is established. It maintains that community and transforms it -Law is a form of rhetoric, (he means to use rhetoric in its classical definition,--as part of one of the classic legal arts: the art of persuasion) -Rhetoric is the art of using language to persuade others -A living form of social disclosure: -modern society has come to view the law as a mere tool or machine: the instrumental model -this doesn’t reflect the richness or complexity of our closeness to the law-He is trying to explain: there is a constant deeper relationship between you and the law that is not captured in the instrumental model -In this way, we come to think incorrectly that the law is an object for society, and that society is an object of the law -But by reducing law to policy choices

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UW LSJ 375 - Lecture 2: The Creation of Crime?

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