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Course Details

Spring 2014-2015
* AAS 247 / POL 382 (SA)   No Audit

The New Jim Crow: US Crime Policy from Constitutional Formation to Ferguson

Naomi Murakawa

This course explores the political development of America's racially disparate punishment regime. We trace the history of US crime policy, moving through US constitutional formation, Reconstruction and lynch law, and Jim Crow punishment in the South and urban North. We focus on punishment in post-civil rights America, and we devote special attention to policing, the death penalty, and the interconnected wars on crime, drugs, immigration, and terror. Our overarching goal is to understand the political construction of crime, colorblindness, and legitimate state violence.

Sample reading list:
Michelle Alexander, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration
Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Condemnation of Blackness
David Oshinsky, 'Worse Than Slavery': Parchman Farm
Stuart Hall, Policing the Crisis: Mugging, the State, and Law and Order

Reading/Writing assignments:
Reading is approximately 200-250 pages per week. Writing assignments include four response papers, a midterm essay, and a take-home final essay.

Mid Term Exam - 30%
Take Home Final Exam - 40%
Papers - 10%
Oral Presentation(s) - 10%
Class/Precept Participation - 10%


Schedule/Classroom assignment:

Class numberSectionTimeDaysRoomEnrollmentStatus
42944 L01 03:00:00 pm - 04:20:00 pm M W   East Pyne Building   010   Enrolled:43 Limit:65