Link to What's New This Week Criminal Justice/Social Justice: CRMJ 353, Spring 2008, UWP

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Criminal Justice/Social Justice
Syllabus for CRMJ 353. Spring 2008

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California State University, Dominguez Hills
University of Wisconsin, Parkside
Soka University Japan - Transcend Art and Peace
Created: August 24, 2003
Latest update: May 1, 2008

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Index of Topics on Site Syllabus for Criminal Justice/Social Justice

Susan Takata
Office: 362 MOLN
Office Hours: MWF 8:45-9:45am & by appointment
Phone: (262) 595-2116
FAX: (262) 595-2471
Class meets MWF 11-11:50 a.m.

Brief Description:

CRMJ 353 will explore the criminological, sociological and philosophical discussions of justice. Perspectives include race, class, gender and other differences; both postmodern and critical theory analyses of institutional and interpersonal relationships. We will examine the relationship between "criminal justice" and "social justice." The readings in this course should challenge you to think about the theory and assumptions that underlie your position, and the many alternatives that have been and will continue to be presented in this new millennium.


  • Paul Loeb. The Impossible Will Take a Little While: A Citizen's Guide to Hope in a Time of Fear..
  • Martha Minow. Between Vengeance and Forgiveness: Facing History after Genocide and Mass Violence.
  • Cornel West. Democracy Matters.

  • (optional) Jurgen Habermas. Between Facts and Norms.
  • (optional) Martha Minow. Making All the Difference.
  • other readings and texts to be assigned.
  • should read the newspaper and/or watch the news regularly.
  • Dear Habermas Website [refer to handout]


    You must have:
    • a three-ring binder
    • an e-mail address (available through the university)
    • Internet access (access to PCs in microcomputing labs on campus)

    Course Objectives

    • Answerability Objective: To master the concept of aesthetic processes of answerability and its role in creating an atmosphere of morality and ethics in our institutions and world systems, particularly the educational system. Outcomes: You will participate in class and online discussions, respecting the answerability of every member of the community, and the aesthetic process of collaborative creation. You are expected to demonstrate active and involved learning. Written expression is as important as dialog participation and other means of expression (such as art or photography). Silence will not be acceptable, though I am willing to consider a preference for interpassivity.

    • Technological Objective: To master the simple use of any computer that happens to be available. Our assignments and readings are on the Internet. Please be sure you know how to access them and to post ot the discussions. Outcomes: You will be expected to access class materials on the Dear Habermas website and to post the online discussions.

    • Theoretical Objective: To come away from this course with a deep understanding of the role that theory plays in our lives, particularly as it relates to criminal justice and social justice. To use a vocabulary which permit discussion of theory: fairness, justice, the tension between facts and norms, difference, the Other, structural violence, privileging subjectivity, unstated assumptions, optimism, pessimism, tolerance of ambiguity, inequality, and so forth. Outcomes: Measured by inclusion of references in written and oral contributions to discourse. In your submissions to our online discussion group and during class discussions, you will consider the framing of the facts you cite, the illocutionary discourse in which you must engage to hear one another in good faith, and the importance of such a forum to in depth consideration of issues relating to criminal justice/social justice.

    • Visual Criminological Objective: To review and evaluate materials on criminal justice/social justice by creating a visual presentation of your learning in this course. Outcomes: You will present at least two visual projects to the class (one at midterm and the other at the end of the semester). Visual projects should reflect your competence and creativity in this course.

    • Praxis Objective: To recognize differences between theory, factual knowledge and the application and synthesis of that knowledge in praxis. Outcomes: You will apply theoretical discussions to examples within your own institutions and life worlds, as they relate to criminal justice/social justice. Focus on conceptually linking critical theory to current events and personal narratives shared in face-to-face and Internet discussions.

      Grades and Grading

      Grades can be important feedback when they are collaborative and used as feedback to guide further learning. They are harmful when they become a reified end in their own right. Because we are required by the institution to give grades, there must be a means of your letting us know what you hae learned. We expect each of you to communicate with us, so that we come to know you and your learning. Meaningful learning comes when we stretch the corners of each other's mind by looking at these concepts from multiple perspectives that come from our myriad unique experiences. You are invited to choose the measures of learning that best fits your learning style best. More details will be provided in class.

      The 6Cs - communication, courtesy, consistency, competency, creativity, and cooperation continue to represent our standards for evaluation. Refer to Grades on the Dear Habermas web site. Your coursework must show scholarly discipline in conceptually linking your learning to theory, policy, practice, and to course readings, class discussions, and other materials.

      Ideally, four progress checks (meeting with the professor every four weeks) throughout the semester is recommended. A minimum of two progress checks with the professor is required (at midterm and at the end of the semester).

      The minimum requirements for a course grade of "C" are: 1) the completion of all the weekly discussion questions, 2) participatory class attendance (not only attending but participating in class discussions), and 3) at least a "C average" on pop quizzes (to note "do not count" on the majority of pop quizzes is "below average").

      Measures of Learning

    • First Half of the Semester (30%)
    • First Half Visual Project(s) (10%)
    • Second Half of the Semester (40%)
    • Second Half Visual Project(s) (20%)

      Grade Scale

      95-100 = A
      90-94 = A-
      88-89 = B+
      85-87 = B
      80-84 = B-
      78-79 = C+
      75-77 = C
      70-74 = C-
      68-69 = D+
      65-67 = D
      60-64 = D-
      59 and below = F

  • Statement on Plagiarism

    DON'T DO IT!! Give credit to those whose ideas and words you use. Cooperation and sharing in this class will earn you a better grade. Adversarialism is not a part of our teaching. We believe that learning flowers in an environment that permits mutuality to flourish.

    Communication - It is your responsibility to communicate an emergency and other situations in a timely manner to the professor. Communicating your whereabouts is important. Don't be a field mouse.

    Students with Disabilities - Students with disabilities are encouraged to meet with me as soon as possible to discuss accommodations. Accommodations should be authorized through the Disability Services Office, WYLL D175. Dr. Renee' Sartin-Kirby - Coordinator can be reached at (262) 595-2610.

    Deadlines/Due Dates/Meeting Times - All due dates, meeting times, and deadlines are firm. Late assignments will not be accepted. A "no show" will result in an "F" for that particular task. The absolute final deadline for all course work is Monday, April 21st at 11 a.m. central time.

    Groupwork: You may work in groups on any or all exercises or assignments. Cooperative learning groups are strongly encouraged. You can work with more than one group, and with different groups. All names of active group members should be recorded as indicated on the exercise material. (Refer to Cooperative Learning on the Dear Habermas site ).



    WeekTopic and Class PreparationTextual Readings
    Week 1
    Introduction Loeb introduction
    Minow, foreword, ch. 1
    Week 2
    The Teaching/Learning Model & Seeds of the Possible
    ** Wed, Jan. 30th 12 noon to 1 p.m.-- Optional Dear Habermas Workshop in the library microcomputing classroom
    Loeb, ch. 1-4
    Week 3
    Dark Before Dawn
    Vengeance and Forgiveness
    Loeb, ch. 5-7
    Minow, ch. 2
    Week 4
    Everyday Grace
    Loeb, ch. 8-12
    Minow, ch. 3
    Week 5
    The Flight of Our Dreams
    Truth Commissions
    Loeb, ch. 13-21
    Minow, ch. 4
    Week 6
    Courage is Contagious
    Loeb, ch. 22-27
    Minow, ch. 5
    Week 7
    The Global Stage
    Facing History

    **Feb. 29th - March 7th - Midterm Meetings
    Loeb, ch. 28-32
    Minow, ch. 6
    Week 8
    Criminal Justice/Social Justice @ Midterm
    **Monday, 3/10 - Midterm Visual Projects due
    **Friday, 3/14 - Last Day to Drop Course
    Minow, entirety
    Loeb, ch. 1-32
    Week 9
    Spring Break
    **No Class- M 3/17, W 3/19 & F 3/21
    Week 10
    Radical Dignity
    Democracy Matters are Frightening...
    Loeb, ch. 33-38
    West, ch. 1-2
    Week 11
    Beyond Hope Loeb, ch. 39-44
    Week 12
    Democratic Traditions/IdentitiesWest, ch. 3-4
    Week 13
    Only Justice Can Stop a Curse
    ...Christian Identity... /...Youth Culture

    Loeb, ch. 45-49
    West, ch. 5-6
    Week 14
    The Democratic Armor
    ** Mon, April 21st at 11 a.m. central time - Final Absolute Deadline
    West, ch. 7
    Week 15
    Criminal Justice/Social Justice: Theory, Policy, Practice
    ** Monday, April 28th - Visual Projects due
    ** Wednesday, April 30th 10am-1pm - Hallway Exhibition
    all 3 books completed
    Week 16
    Criminal Justice/Social Justice: Theory, Policy, Practice
    The Teaching/Learning Model Revisited

    ** May 5-9 - Second Meetings
    ** Friday, May 9th - Last Day of Class

    Site Copyright: Jeanne Curran and Susan R. Takata and Individual Authors, August 2003.
    "Fair use" encouraged.