1st Edition

Remorse and Criminal Justice Multi-Disciplinary Perspectives

    314 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    314 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This multi-disciplinary collection brings together original contributions to present the best of current thinking about the nature and place of remorse in the context of criminal justice. Despite the widespread and long-standing nature of interest in offender remorse, the topic has until recently been peripheral in academic studies.

    The authors are scholars from North America, the United Kingdom, Europe, South Africa and Australia, from diverse academic disciplines. They reflect on the role of remorse in law, for better or for worse; on how expressions of remorse are affected by the legal contexts in which they arise; and on the impact of these expressions on the individual, the court and the community. The work is divided into four parts – Part I Judging Remorse addresses issues concerning the task of assessing remorse in the courtroom, usually prior to determining sentence. Part II Remorse Beyond the Courtroom explores the place and significance of remorse in various post-court settings. Part III Remorse, War and Social Trauma addresses remorse in the context of political violence and social trauma in the former Yugoslavia and South Africa. Finally, Part IV Reflections seeks to underscore the multi-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary nature of the collection as a whole, through personal and disciplinary reflections on remorse.

    The work provides a showcase for how diverse academic disciplines can be brought together through a focus on a common topic. As such, the collection will become a standard reference work for further research across a range of disciplines and promote inter-disciplinary dialogue.

    Introduction (Steven Tudor, Richard Weisman Michael Proeve and Kate Rossmanith)

    Part I: Judging Remorse

    Chapter 1: Susan A. Bandes, "Remorse and Judging"

    Chapter 2: Cyrus Tata and Jay Gormley, "Remorse and Sentencing in a World of Plea Bargaining"

    Chapter 3: Jennifer M. Kilty and Charissa Weir, "Temporary Irresponsibility, Foolish Mistakes, and Outright Villains: Narratives of Remorse in Sexual Assault Trials"

    Chapter 4: Steven Tudor, "Reflections on the Grey Zone: ‘Sort of Remorseful’ Offenders"

    Chapter 5: Hugh Dillon, "Cranking the Sausage Machine: A Magistrate’s Perspective on Remorse Assessment

    Part II: Remorse Beyond the Courtroom

    Chapter 6: Christopher Bennett, "Remorse, Probation and the State"

    Chapter 7: Maggie Hall and Kate Rossmanith, "Long Haul Remorse: The Continuous Performance of Repentance Throughout Prison Sentences"

    Chapter 8: Jamie O’Donahoo and Janette Graetz Simmonds, "Perceptions of Remorse in Forensic Patients"

    Chapter 9: Judy Eaton, "Remorse on Death Row"

    Part III: Remorse, War and Social Trauma

    Chapter 10: Barbora Holá and Joris van Wijk, "Remorse in International Criminal Justice: Sentencing, Offender Rehabilitation and Reintegration: A Case Study of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia"

    Chapter 11: Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, "Remorse as Ethical Encounter and the Impossibility of Repair"

    Part IV: Reflections

    Chapter 12: Kate Rossmanith, Steven Tudor, Richard Weisman and Michael Proeve, "Reflections on Researching Remorse: Unearthing an Epistemological Unconscious"


    Steven Tudor is a Senior Lecturer in the Law School at La Trobe University, Australia. He has also worked as a lawyer and as a public servant for the Victorian state government, specialising criminal law policy and reform issues. His PhD was in philosophy and his research interests mostly concern the philosophical aspects of criminal law, especially issues relating to emotions and conscience.

    Richard Weisman is Professor Emeritus, Law and Society Program, Department of Social Science, York University, Toronto, Canada. For the past two decades, his research has centered on exploring the interpenetration of law and moral regulation as well as the interrelationship between legal discourse and popular discourse.

    Michael Proeve is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Adelaide, and a forensic and clinical psychologist. He has also worked as a practising psychologist for the Victorian and South Australian governments and in private practice and as a manager of treatment services in several correctional settings. His PhD concerned remorse as an internal and interpersonal emotion, and his published works concern remorse, shame, risk assessment, and mindfulness.

    Kate Rossmanith is an author, essayist and academic. Her background is in anthropology, performance studies and creative writing, and she researches the role of emotion, enactment and narrative in legal contexts. She is an Associate Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at Macquarie University, Sydney.

    "Remorse permeates the entire criminal justice system, affecting decisions from policing through to parole. This unique collection of essays explores the role and consequences of remorse, drawing on a range of perspectives and disciplines. It will interest scholars across many jurisdictions, and indeed to anyone with an interest in criminal justice."

    Julian Roberts, Professor of Criminology, University of Oxford, UK

    "As a sentencing judge who wrestles daily with questions of whether and how to detect remorse in a highly multicultural courtroom, Part 1 – Judging Remorse - is particularly helpful in offering theoretical and practical guidance to beleaguered lawyers and judges. This excellent text should be provided to every new judge."

    Justice David P. Cole, Ontario Court of Justice, Toronto, Canada

    "Bringing remorse in from the sidelines of scholarly and policy interest `Remorse and Criminal Justice' untangles the place of this complex emotion in criminal courts and beyond. With depth and urgency, a stellar mix of authors and chapters addresses the performance, expression, experience and assessment of remorse. An essential resource for practitioners, the collection enriches law and emotion scholarship."

    Sharyn Roach Anleu, Matthew Flinders Distinguished Professor, Flinders University, Australia