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Crime, Punishment, and Restorative Justice: From the Margins to the Mainstream.

London, Ross D.
June 4, 2015

Source: (2011) Boulder, CO:FirstForumPress.

The intent of this book is to provide guidance for bringing restorative-justice principles from the margins to the mainstream of the criminal justice system by building on the core values of restorative justice and extending their reach. he theme throughout the book stems from the author’s view that crime, as distinguished from other types of injuries, is fundamentally a breach of trust. For the victim, the experience of crime results in a loss of trust in the offender and in the society that failed to provide basic security. The offender, having been labeled as being “untrustworthy” because of his/her criminal behavior, is an outsider in the law-abiding community. The issue raised in this book is whether the criminal justice system can promote the restoration of trust, both for the benefit of the victim and the offender. The author argues that focusing on the goal of regaining trust helps to clarify the basic principles, strategies, and procedural innovations of restorative justice and also helps to address some of the major dilemmas of restorative justice. Incorporating the individual and the societal dimensions of trust into the restoration-of-trust model is the key to reconciling public and private justice. It is the basis for restorative justice expanding into the mainstream of criminal justice practice and applying it to the widest variety of criminal matters, including juveniles and adults as well as both petty and serious offenses. Under the restoration-of-trust analysis, punishment is evaluated according to its ability to promote or impair trust. Punishment thus understood (especially if voluntarily accepted) operates as a potential means of restoring trust, along with such other means as apology, payment of restitution, completion of rehabilitation, and monitored performance over time in the community. Extensive bibliography, a subject index, and appended scenarios used in this study and sample questionnaires for the individual and societal levels. (Abstract courtesy of the National Criminal Justice Reference Service,


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