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SOC2086 : Post-disciplinary Criminology: Hermeneutics, Poststructuralism and Cultural Theory (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Professor Elaine Campbell
  • Owning School: Geography, Politics & Sociology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module will provide a critical introduction to the emerging work of post-disciplinary criminology. At its most basic, this new field of academic study is formed from an integration of the critical, hermeneutic and postructuralist traditions within criminology, sociology, cultural geography and cultural studies. It aims to introduce students to:

•       Critical criminological, and interpretive inter/postdisciplinary perspectives on culture, from hermeneutics to poststructuralist scholarship
•       A range of contemporary theoretical and conceptual frameworks for understanding the relationship between culture and questions of crime, punishment, victimisation, justice, law and order
•       A range of cultural theoretical frameworks for making sense of crime and space, particularly urban space
•       A range of methods for analysing representations of crimes and punishment using different cultural media and forms
•       Ways of thinking about the transformative power of digital cultures for criminal and policing landscapes

Outline Of Syllabus

The module is structured around the following five thematic components.

Theme 1: Postdisciplinary Criminology: The Contours of an Interdisciplinary Field
•       Working against orthodoxy
•       Interpretivism and Hermeneutics
•       Poststructuralist approaches and postdisciplinary theories
•       The contribution from cultural geographies
•       British cultural studies
•       French cultural studies

Theme 2: The Cultural Politics of Criminality, Victimization and Punishment
•       Criminal imagery
•       Narratives of victimhood
•       Lives behind bars

Theme 3: Crime and the City
•       The crime-city nexus
•       Criminogenic spaces
•       The misanthropic city

Theme 4: Methodological Approaches to Crime, Culture and Society
•       Review of interpretive/cultural analytical methodologies
•       Narrative analysis
•       Visual research methods
•       Discourse/textual analysis
•       Ethnographic approaches
•       Sensory ethnography
•       Aesthetics
•       Affect
•       Acoustics

Theme 5: Digital Cultures and their Criminological Discontents
•       Cybercriminology
•       Digital vigilantism
•       Digitalised rape culture
•       Mediated offending

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture52:0010:00PiP (timetabled)
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion130:0030:00This will include bookable 1-to-1 Zoom meetings to discuss assessment preparation.
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading1136:30136:30N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching51:005:00PiP (timetabled) small group discussion
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops21:002:00PiP (timetabled). Assessment preparation.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops51:005:00PiP (timetabled). Case study analysis.
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops52:0010:00Synchronous, timetabled, online delivery (students present case studies)
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesModule talk11:301:30Synchronous, timetabled on-line delivery (overview of module content and teaching/learning methods)
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Scheduled Learning and Teaching Activities: Lectures (2 hours) introduce students to the key theoretical, conceptual and methodological approaches to postdisciplinary criminology, including keywords exercises and academic skills activities; Case study analysis workshops (1 hour) provide students with the important `hands-on’ experience of applying theoretical and methodological frameworks to the analysis of empirical data; Case study presentations and enrichment workshops (2 hours) are student-led and based on student presentations of set case studies, followed by discussion, Q&A; Seminars (1 hour) provide a forum for presenting, reviewing and critically debating journal articles relevant to the particular thematic.
Students will be directed toward particular articles for the seminars and will be expected to prepare a critical review of these articles. Assessment preparation workshops (2 @ 1 hour): these are compulsory sessions in which students can explore the key features of the assessment requirements and raise questions and concerns as appropriate;
Module talk 1.5 hour) is offered to ensure students are familiar with the module format, online delivery, guided learning activities, and the importance of workshop-based discussion/Q&A.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Case study2M60Critical case study (2500 words)
Essay2M40Strictly journals review (1500 words)
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Essay2MOptional: One page essay plan
Essay2MOptional: One page essay plan
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Strictly journals review: students will be required to critically review a journal article in the light of, and informed by their knowledge and understanding of different theoretical and conceptual approaches to postdisciplinary criminology, as well as their understanding of the substantive issues raised by the journal articles. These approaches are introduced and taught in Themes 1, 2 and 3 of the syllabus. Students will choose from a short list of journal articles selected by the module leader.

Critical case study: students will be required to submit a critical case study which will assess their knowledge and understanding of the theoretical, analytical and methodological insights which have been developed and explored over the module programme. This assessment requires students to demonstrate their grasp of the module material taught as an inclusive and linked body of knowledge. Students will be free to select for themselves the material and focus of the critical case study.

There are optional formative assessments for both the Journal Review and the Critical Case Study; these will provide students with an opportunity to write outline plans of their review and/or critical case study.

Reading Lists