CRJU 20423 Chapter 8: Critical Issues in Crime & Justice: Chapter 8

6 Pages

Criminal Justice
Course Code
CRJU 20423

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Critical Issues in Crime and Justice by Maguire Okada Chapter 8: Race and Crime I. Introduction a. The concepts of race and crime have been inextricably linked in the study of th criminology and criminal justice since the late 19 century. b. Courses explore the economic, historical, political, and sociological contexts of race and crime. Most examine historical and contemporary issues including race and the extent of crime, police, courts, corrections, juvenile justice, disproportionate minority confinement and contact, bias and hate crime, immigration and crime, racial profiling and sentencing disparities. II. Definitional Issues a. The definition of race is complex. Historically, race was conceptualized biologically and primarily based on ones physical characteristics. b. Over time, according to the American Anthropological Association (1997), the concept of race acquired a cultural and ideological context in the Untied States and elsewhere in the world that magnified the differences among Europeans, Africans, and Indians, established a rigid hierarchy of socially exclusive categories, underscored and bolstered unequal rank and status differences, and provided the rationalization that the inequality was natural or Godgiven. c. Biological differences between individuals, especially color and hue, provide the foundation for what many refer to as the social construction of race. d. In 2000, the U.S. Bureau recognizes five racial categories including American Indian, or Alaskan native, Black or African American, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islanders, and White; Latino or Hispanic origin is recognized as an ethnic category. e. In 2010, more than 9 million Americans considered themselves multiracial and selfidentified with two or more races. f. Persons of Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, the largest minority group, also are of very diverse origins. g. Race does not capture heterogeneity (differences within racial or ethnic groups). h. All members of a racialethnicminority group are not the same; there are cultural, subcultural, and class differences not only between but also within racial and ethnic groups. i. Obamas mom was white, father was African, and was raised by white grandparents in Hawaii. j. Paul Tappan defined crime as an intentional act in violation of the criminal law committed without defense or excuse, and penalized by the state as a felony or misdemeanor. k. Behaviors that are labeled has crimes have changed but murder, rape, burglary, and theft have not. l. In the past and present, many factors including values, industrialization, immigration, and technological developments have led to both the criminalization and decriminalization of many behaviors. a. When legislative efforts to outlaw the sale and use of alcohol failed, it was decriminalized.
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