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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : African Studies

Postgraduate Course: Policing and Punishment: Insights from across the globe (AFRI11010)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course explores the diverse actors involved with 'everyday policing' and 'everyday punishment'. Engaging with case studies from across the globe, this course looks at ideas and practices of policing and punishment, as well as their contestation.

In doing so, the course will be asking broader questions: What does statehood mean across time and space? What does it mean across different groups within any given polity? How do police and justice officials shape ideas and practices of statehood? How does the broader, diverse policing and punishment landscape reflect and reconfigure existing power relations? What can the contestation of these practices tell us about the relationship between power and legitimacy? What can it tell us about the relationship between violence and the law? What can it tell us about inclusion, exclusion and oppression at an international, national, and local level?

In answering these questions, this course will draw heavily on ethnographic accounts of policing and punishment, as well as the broader literatures of criminology, policing studies, and socio-legal studies.
Course description This course will operate through a case study approach, drawing in cases from across the globe. The proposed lecture topics are as follows:

1. Understanding 'the law': England and Kenya in historical perspective
2. Understanding crime and deviance: Zimbabwe and Egypt
3. State policing: Brazil and France
4. Private security: Iraq and South Africa
5. Policing the borders: Italy and Thailand
6. Local Courts: Uganda and Palestine
7. Prisons and punishment: US and Russia
8. Alternative Dispute Resolution: UK and India
9. Vigilantism: Ireland and South Africa
10. Conclusions
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  30
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 196 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Class participation: 10 percent«br /»
Short Essay: 20 percent«br /»
Long Essay: 70 percent
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Explore, synthesise and question a diverse range of sources central to the study of policing and punishment
  2. Understand the core concepts at the heart of studies of policing and punishment
  3. Hold an independent analytical perspective that is grounded in an engagement with contemporary debates in the field
  4. Communicate complex understandings in clear, coherent and rigorous ways that centre the voices of those who are oppressed, stigmatised and marginalised.
  5. Apply theoretical debates on policing and punishment to current affairs across the globe
Reading List
Caldeira, T.P., 2000. City of walls: crime, segregation, and citizenship in São Paulo. Univ of California Press.

Davis, A.Y., 2016. If They Come in the Morning...: Voices of Resistance. Verso Books.

Jauregui, B., 2015. Just War: The Metaphysics of Police Vigilantism in India. Conflict and Society, 1(1), pp.41-59.

Lar, J. 2017. Historicising Vigilante Policing in Plateau State, Nigeria. In Steinberg, J. Owen, O. Beek, J. and Gopfert, M. (eds). Police in Africa: the Street Level View. Hurst and Co.

Mutahi, P., 2011. Between illegality and legality:(In) security, crime and gangs in Nairobi informal settlements. South African Crime Quarterly, 37, pp.11-18.

Steinberg, J., 2008. Thin Blue-the unwritten rules of policing South Africa.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills By the end of the course, students will be equipped with new skills in:
1. Identifying and engaging with credible sources and evidence, both inside and outside the academy
2. Writing clearly about complex issues
3. Assembling together persuasive arguments that are well-supported with evidence
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Samuel Iwilade
Course secretaryMr Adam Petras
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