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Debating Restorative Justice

Debating Law is a new, exciting series that gives scholarly experts the opportunity to offer contrasting perspectives on significant topics of contemporary, general interest. In this first volume of the series Carolyn Hoyle argues that communities and the state should be more restorative in responding to harms caused by crimes, antisocial behaviour and other incivilities. She supports the exclusive use of restorative justice for many non-serious offences, and favours approaches that, by integrating restorative and retributive philosophies, take restorative practices into the 'deep end' of criminal justice. While acknowledging that restorative justice appears to have much to offer in terms of criminal justice reform, Chris Cunneen offers a different account, contending that the theoretical cogency of restorative ideas is limited by their lack of a coherent analysis of social and political power. He goes on to argue that after several decades of experimentation, restorative justice has not produced significant change in the criminal justice system and that the attempt to establish it as a feasible alternative to dominant practices of criminal justice has failed. This lively and valuable debate will be of great interest to everyone interested in the criminal justice system.
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Table of Contents

The Case for Restorative Justice by Carolyn Hoyle I. Introduction II. A Route through Definitional constraints and Imprecision A. Introduction B. Defining Victims and Offenders C. Crimes and Harms D. Restorative Justice and Restorative Practices III. Community at the Heart of Restorative Justice IV. A reflection on the Imbalance between Restorative Aspirations and Restorative Practices A. Restorative Justice in the UK: All Talk and Little or No Action B. A Criminology of Hope C. Appeals to Communitarianism V. Restorative Justice and Criminal Justice: Complementary not Contradictory A. A Challenge to an Unhelpful Dichotomy B. The Case for the Coexistence of Restorative and Criminal Justice C. A Framework for the Coexistence of Restorative and Criminal Justice 1. Engaging community in search of appropriate participants 2. A qualified defence of coercion 3. The aims of punishment and the boundaries of proportionality 4. Who should facilitate restorative processes? 5. Conclusion VI. In Defence of Restoration in the 'Deep end' of Criminal Justice A. Domestic Violence B. Crimes against Humanity C. Everything has its Limits VII. Conclusion: Restoration for Fragmented Communities Bibliography The Limitations of Restorative Justice by Chris Cunneen I. Introduction II. Why Restorative Justice A. Concept of Origins B. Explaining the Rise of Restorative Justice C. Policy Transfer and the Globalisation of Restorative Justice III. Creating Ideal Victims and Offenders A. The Victim B. Victim Trauma C. Does Restorative Justice Offer a Better Deal for Victims? D. The Offender E. Structural Inequalities and the Offender/Victim Relationship 1. Violence against women 2. Hate crimes 3. Social inequality F. Victims, Offenders, Rights and Incommensurability IV. Law, State and Community A. The Role of Law and the State B. Policing and Criminalisation C. Punishment and Risk D. The Community E. Transitional Justice V. Conclusion: Searching for Truth in Restorative Justice Index

About the Author

Chris Cunneen is Professor of Criminology at the Cairns Institute, James Cook University, Australia. Carolyn Hoyle is a Reader in Criminology and a Fellow of Green Templeton College at the University of Oxford.


This stimulating and thought-provoking read is the first volume in a new 'Debating Law' series. ... these essays provide a critical but accessible introduction to the current debate. The merit of this work is that it is not simply an informative outline of theories and practices. As a tool of learning, the dialectical structure is excellent. Both authors make useful references to theoreticians, practices and case studies, and Hoyle provides an extensive bibliography. A must read for the student of criminology, law and sociology, we can eagerly await the next in the series. Christine Baker JUSTICE Journal July 2011 This new and interesting series is an opportunity for expert scholars to offer contrasting perspectives on contemporary issues which will be welcomed by the thoughtful undergraduate criminologist. There are many useful references and the 'Debating Law' series will be an additional invaluable source for the inquisitive criminologist who will always be on the look-out for some answers...even though ti is clear from the finely balanced arguments of both schools of thought , that the debate will continue for a long time to come! Philip Taylor November 2010

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