“The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.” -- Fyodor Dostoyevsky, 1862.
This is an inter and trans-disciplinary course, which has two main objectives. The first is to serve as an introduction into the current realities and challenges of the LatinX community within the criminal justice complex in the United States. The course seeks to critically examine the misconceptions and realities of the LatinX community within the larger discussion of mass incarceration and prison reform in the United States. Close attention will also be paid to the use of criminalization as a form of social control and the proliferation of regulations, ordinances, and legislative acts that give legal form to such methods of discipline and punishment. The course will address dynamics and phenomena of racial profiling; juvenile justice; drug criminalization; and the intersection of immigration law with criminal law. In concluding, the course will shift to understanding and connecting the prison-industrial complex to what the future holds for marginalized communities within the current movement and crisis of global capital.
The course also seeks to improve your skills in critical reading, writing, and thinking. Paper assignments and essay exams will provide opportunities to develop your own interpretations systematically and polish your writing skills.
While there undoubtedly exists an infinite research agenda when it comes to the study mass incarceration and the ongoing challenges of the LatinX community within the criminal justice system of the United States, it is only possible [in 15 weeks] to cover a limited surface/amount of such complicated history and realities of these topics. However, I have provided a list of suggested/recommended readings for additional literature to be consulted.
3 short videos with the professor