Potential Partnerships: Progressive Criminology, Grassroots Organizations and Social Justice


Criminologists around the globe are writing about the disproportionate criminalization of minority groups and – in the US in particular – about racial disproportionality in all aspects of the criminal justice system. This wealth of knowledge in progressive criminology rarely animates reform efforts: it has had little impact on formal policymaking, and has failed to animate the work of grassroots activists engaged in the fight for justice system reform. Yet given the increased criminalization of young people in poor communities – and the possibilities for change at this very moment – progressive criminological ideas have never been more important. We need to think about ways to make them public. Toward this end, this paper discusses possible partnerships between progressive criminology and social justice organizations struggling to transform the criminal justice system. While describing nine such groups, we detail a set of recommendations for bridging the gap between progressive criminology and social justice organizations.
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Published: 2015-12-01
Pages:76 to 90
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How to Cite
Goddard, T., Myers, R. R. and Robison, K. (2015) “Potential Partnerships: Progressive Criminology, Grassroots Organizations and Social Justice”, International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy, 4(4), pp. 76-90. doi: 10.5204/ijcjsd.v4i4.231.

Author Biographies

Florida International University
 United States
Department of Criminal Justice Assistant Professor
Old Dominion University
 United States
Old Dominion University
 United States
Kaitlyn J. Robison is a doctoral student and instructor in Criminology and Criminal Justice at Old Dominion University. Her interests lie broadly in the reproduction of inequality through punishment in terms of race, class, gender, and the intersections of each. She has specific interests in youth justice, state supervision, and critical theory.