Criminal Justice-COLL | Deviant Images/Deviant Acts
P305 | 27464 | Kane
This course examines the popular fascination with deviance using a
cross-cultural perspective. We approach the subject through three
complementary modes of conveying knowledge: criminology,
ethnography, and the graphic novel. These genres analyze and
represent deviant images in a range of sociocultural and historical
contexts, thereby bringing our attention to the diverse ways that
people define, theorize, and enact nonconformity and justify social
control. Pfohlís textbook is an innovative examination of the major
theories of deviance as they were conceptualized in historical
context and transformed over successive scholarly generations.
Criminological theories include the demonic, classical,
pathological, anomie and labeling theories as well as more recent
reflexive approaches to power based on analyses of race, gender,
class, and sexual orientation. In conjunction, we read Kaneís
ethnography about the intersection of AIDS with drug- and sex-
related behaviors that link viral risk with deviance in the social
imagination, with dramatic consequences in criminal law and public
health. The ethnography draws from data collected by means of
participant observation, mass media representations, and legal
decisions in both the United States and Belize to show how images
that meld risk and deviance create different effects as they
circulate around the globe. We also read Spiegelmanís celebrated
graphic novel, created in his unique allegorical style. Drawing on
the stories of his father, a Holocaust survivor, the artist leads us
into the subject of the confusion and terror that overcomes citizens
when their nation-state and government becomes deviant.
As we build our understanding to analyze the important
debates in criminal justice and cultural politics that we are
currently facing, we focus particular attention on the gap between
the symbolic power of images and the often mundane realities of
Kane, Stephanie. 1998. AIDS Alibis: Sex, Drugs, and Crime in the
Americas. Philadelphia: Temple University press.
Pfohl, Stephen. Images of Deviance and Social Control. Second
Edition. Waveland Press.
Spiegelman, Art. 1986. Maus: A Survivorís Tale. I: My Father Bleeds
History. New York: Pantheon.
[Note: A copy of each book is on reserve at the library.]
Class meeting: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:30-3:45, BH 005
Instructor: Professor Stephanie Kane, criminal justice department