The Role of Community in Restorative Justice: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

The Role of Community in Restorative Justice

1st Edition

By Fernanda Fonseca Rosenblatt


226 pages | 2 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9781138288706
pub: 2016-11-30
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pub: 2015-04-28
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pub: 2015-04-17
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Although restorative justice is probably one of the most talked about topics in contemporary criminology, little has been written about how community involvement in restorative justice translates into practice. While advocates have presented the community as an essential pillar of restorative justice, the rationale for why and how this is the case remains underdeveloped and largely unchallenged. This book offers an empirical and theoretical explanation of what ‘community involvement’ means and what work it does in restorative justice.

Drawing on an empirical case study and the wider sociological literature, The Role of Community in Restorative Justice examines the involvement of the community in one selected practice of restorative justice and also considers the implications of the English and Welsh experience for development of a more coherent framework for operationalizing community involvement in restorative justice practices. It is argued that restorative justice programmes need to start from a more concrete and up-to-date notion of community. While operationalizing community involvement, they need to acknowledge, all at once: the importance of place; the importance of family links, friendship and other social ties; and the importance of similar social traits and identities.

This book is essential reading for students, researchers and academics in the fields of criminology, criminal justice, sociology, community studies, policy studies, social policy and socio-legal studies. This book will also be valuable reading for a variety of practitioners and policymakers, particularly working with restorative justice and youth justice.


‘Focusing on Great Britain, Rosenblatt offers the first empirical results on this subject, making it a must-read for anybody who is interested in the relationship between Restorative Justice and Communities. It should be on the bookshelf of any serious scholar in this area. The future lies in works like this.’ - Elmar G.M. Weitekamp, Ph.D. University of Tübingen, Germany

‘In The Role of Community in Restorative Justice, Rosenblatt confronts the mythology of government programs that claim to be "restorative" by exploring the concept of community more closely and examining how it is employed. She provides an excellent assessment and critique of how youth justice panels in the United Kingdom fall far short of meaningful community involvement. Her work will inspire others to scrutinize the implementation of restorative justice initiatives to ensure fidelity to its fundamental premises.’ - Ted Wachtel, President, IIRP Graduate School, USA

‘This book represents an important contribution to restorative justice scholarship by providing theoretically-informed and empirically-rich insights into the role of community in restorative practices. Rosenblatt gives us a nuanced and balance appraisal of the restorative pretentions of youth offender panels in theory and in practice, as well as the benefits and challenges of engaging community members in such processes. The book will be of considerable interest and value to all those – academics, policymakers and practitioners, both in the UK and beyond – who are seeking to advance community involvement in dispute resolution and justice systems more generally.’ - Adam Crawford, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of Leeds, UK

“Rosenblatt has started to untangle the quagmire that is restorative justice, especially in relation to youth justice panels. She has provided evidence that the UK position of these panels is outdated and under researched; practitioners should therefore take note and use this book to their advantage, as it offers useful insights and would help to inspire change in a positive and modern fashion.” - Darren Woodward, University Centre Grimsby, Prison Service Journal (November 2016)

Table of Contents

Introduction 1. The Restorative Justice ‘Spirit' 2. Restorative Justice’s Problematic Appeals to Community, 3. Selecting a Case Study of Community Involvement in Restorative Justice 4. Notes on an Empirical Study 5. Youth Offender Panels: a Play in Three Acts 6. The Role of Community in Youth Offender Panels 7. Towards a Coherent Framework for Operationalizing Community Involvement in Restorative Justice Programmes Conclusions.

About the Author

Fernanda Fonseca Rosenblatt is an Assistant Professor in Law at the Catholic University of Pernambuco (UNICAP), Brazil, where she teaches Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure. Fernanda completed her DPhil in Criminology at the Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford, in January 2014. In 2005 she was awarded a Master’s degree from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. Fernanda is currently a member of the Executive Committee of the World Society of Victimology. She is also a member of the Asa Branca Research Group of Criminology (UNICAP, Brazil). Her areas of expertise are: Restorative Justice, Community (Justice), Youth Justice and Street Children.

About the Series

Routledge Frontiers of Criminal Justice

Routledge Frontiers of Criminal Justice offers the very best in research on criminal justice systems around the world, offering fresh insights on a range of topics in criminal procedure, including policing, prisons, courts, youth justice, community measures, rehabilitation, victimology and forensics science.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology