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Debating Restorative Justice

By: Chris Cunneen, Carolyn Hoyle
Media of Debating Restorative Justice
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Published: 25-08-2010
Format: Paperback
Edition: 1st
Extent: 210
ISBN: 9781849460224
Imprint: Hart Publishing
Series: Debating Law
Dimensions: 216 x 138 mm
RRP: £22.99
Online price : £20.69
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About 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.

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
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


“... Debating Restorative Justice provides a clear and accessible introduction to the key debates within restorative justice. The presentation of both author's arguments in sequence is a major strength of the book. Both authors offer convincing arguments from their individual stances, which in combination makes for an interesting contribution to wider policy and practice debates...practitioners...would do well to read this book, using the debates rehearsed as a way of reflecting upon their own practice and ways of 'doing' restoriative justice.” –  Linda Asquith, Criminology and Criminal Justice, Volume 12, Number 1

“The juxtaposition of [the] respective positions provides an accessible, engaging scholarly and thought-provoking read.

It is almost impossible, in a review of this length, to 'do justice' to Debating Restorative Justice. Chris Cunneen's and Carolyn Hoyle's essays provide crucial critical insights and authoritatively executed scholarly analyses that serve to reflect, define and extend the core debates in equal measure. It is a remarkable achievement and their book launches the 'Debating Law' series to excellent effect.
” –  Barry Goldson, Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, Volume 44, 2011

“...this is a thought-provoking, interestingly conceived book.” –  C. Powell, University of Southern Maine, CHOICE – Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, September 2011, Vol. 49, No. 1

“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

“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 it 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,

“...the book presents a good and easy discussion concerning the relevant subject matter and is therefore useful for the development of academic discussions. It is a royal research.” –  Farhad Malekian, Criminal Law Forum

“(..)the book presents a good and easy discussion concerning the relevant subject matter and is therefore useful for the development of academic discussion. It is a royal research.” –  Farhad Malekian, Criminal Law Forum

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