Theology & Criminal Justice (THE3199)

30 credits

This option module is designed to explore the connections between religion and criminal justice; to explore the implications of Christian doctrines such as justification for our understanding of the treatment of offenders; to familiarise students with the main lines of the contemporary debate about criminal justice; and to consider the ethics of present policies for dealing with offenders.

In addition to providing students with overviews of major issues in relevant jurisprudence, theology and ethics, the module gives opportunity to students to work from present-day issues in criminal justice, e.g., whole life tariffs, racial profiling, legalizing certain drugs, (over-)use of imprisonment as a punishment strategy, prison and the profit motive, whether restorative justice works. Where possible, we shall visit Exeter County Court and meet with people involved either professionally or in a voluntary capacity with the criminal justice system.

There are no pre-requisites. This module is suitable for students with a philosophical, sociological or theological background. It is expected, however, that students will come with an interest in the kinds of issues detailed here.