Criminology Questions & Topics

(Topics for possible opinion papers, analysis papers, research papers...or just for discussion)
by David H. Kessel
Got any to add? Send them to me!

1. Is there such a thing as "victimless" crime?

2. Marijuana: should it be criminal to use it?

3. Race as a factor in the imposition of the Death Penalty

4. Victimology: sensitivity or revenge

5. The "brutalization" of the public by use of the Death Penalty

6. Pornography: is there such a thing in and of itself?

7. Pornography: is it really a "legal" matter?

8. Crime as essentially a product of the contradictions of Capitalism

9. Civil Liberties and Capitalism: any contradictions here?

10. Crime Statistics and "hidden criminality"

11. Is Criminology "gender-blind": Women and Crime (by and against)

12. Sexual harassment of women: on and off the job

13. Are men ever sexually harassed?

14. Capital Punishment: .`Myths and Realities

15. The social location of crime: its distribution

16. How lawless are businesses?

17. Teaching college courses in prison: Why and How?

18. The Media's role in reporting crime: fact or ideology?

19. The Public's perception and fear of crime: any misconceptions here?

20. Sentencing: Ideas and Issues

21. Understanding crime through literature

22. The portrayal of crime and violence on prime-time TV and/or in the movies

23. Winos/bums/street people/homeless: the response of the CJ system

24. Social Class and unemployment: relationship to crime

25. Child Abuse...why?

26. Ex offenders: labeling and employment

27. Maintaining social order: who is unruly?

28. Who is a deviant?

29. Constitutional issues and Due Process

30. The development of Modern Crirninal Law...focused on a few behaviors

31. Juveniles: where does responsibility begin?

32. Crimes of the rich and of the poor: which are more serious?

33. Gun ownership and control in America...haven't we always had it?

34. White Collar Crime: types and reactions to it.

35. The profit motive: just a way of life...or...criminal?

36. Aggression and Deviance/Crime: is aggression really deviant?

37. Criminal Careers: how are they produced?

38. Alienation of workers and crime

39. Crirninal Justice System: in whose interest is it run?

40. Problems and issues in Police Administration

41. Political Crimes in America: are uniforms used?

42. ACLU: friend or foe (and of whom)?

43. Prisons: historical development and social psychological elements

44. Is life inside a prison so completely different from life outside?

45. Categories of prisoners and their specific needs

46. Correctional Officers: recruitment, training, lifestyle, job attitudes, role conflicts, officer/inmate relations

47. Politics and Prison administration

48. The "view" from within a "cell"

49. Assumptions underlying "rehabilitation": were they ever/are they valid?

50. Social Workers and Psychologists with inmates: what relationship?

51. After imprisonment: what then?

52. Is our imprisonment system pathological?

53. Negotiated Justice: plea bargaining in "exchange-oriented" America

54. Correctional Treatment: is there anything to measure?

55. The purpose and effect of police professionalism

56. The various meanings of criminal statistics

57. Just what is recidivism?

58. The social organization of people in a prison

59. The alcoholic's "return" to society

60. Homosexuality and equal protection under the law

61. Lawyers as legislators: expertise or conflict of interest?

62. Consumer crime: social and physical harm to people

63. Organized Crime: the local political systems

64. American Justice: how much can you afford?

65. Judges: who are they, from where, and appointed by whom?

66. Prosecutors and Defense Lawyers: adversaries or coworkers?

67. Does an adversarial court system really determine truth?

68. The practice of law as a confidence game

69. Police brutality and corruption: can we trust "in-house" control?

70. Has Miranda (reading of rights) really hindered the police?

71. Is it okay to break the law to uphold the law?

72. Does Crime pay: what and to whom?

73. Pretrial and Trial publicity: the media's role

74. Do inmates give up all their rights when incarcerated?

75. Is all criminality deviant?

76. What would our society look like if it actually eliminated all crime?

77. Can we generalize about who's committing crime on the basis of who's been caught?

78. Is any activity MALA EN SE (bad in and of itself)?

79. Is crime an evil which exists in spite of the law?

80. Who makes criminal law?

81. Are there class differences in criminal behavior?

82. Are more men criminal than women?

83. Why do some people challenge the criminal law?

84. Are we a nation "of laws" or "of men (human)"?

85. What does the way a society responds to crime tell us about that society and its values...and about where that society sets its priorities?

86. Is crime a social as well as legal conception...something to be studied rather than merely assumed?

87. Whose "order" or "stability" is disturbed by "crime"?

88. Should the subject matter of Criminology be limited to the existing legal conceptions of crime?

89. Is our image of crime part of the "problem of crime"?

90. Are criminal activities any different in principle, than socalled honest business activities?

91. Could we not ask whether or not our Criminal Justice Systems very existence is JUST, rather than merely if there is justice IN it?

92. What would a "just" system look like?

93. Is our CJ System based on unequal treatment for un-equals and equal treatment for equals?

94. To what extent is public opinion about crime the "result" of the authorities rather than their "guide"?

95. To what extent do the police have an interest in maintaining either a high or low rate of crime?

96. Do correctional officers and prison administrators have a conflict of interest concerning rehabilitation?

97. Is "behavior modification" overused in prisons and other "treatment" programs?

98. Are "conditions" causes?

99. Is there such a thing as "free will"?

100. What other questions need to be asked which arenít on this list?