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Trustees of Amherst College (Amherst, MA 01002-2372)
Austin D. Sarat (Project Director: March 2010 to May 2012)
Punishment, Politics, and Culture

A five-week summer seminar for sixteen school teachers on punishment and its place in American culture.

From The Gospel of Matthew to George Bernard Shaw and former Supreme Court Justice William Brennan, many have remarked that how a society punishes reveals its true character. Punishment then tells us who we are. The way a society punishes demonstrates its commitment to standards of judgment and justice, its distinctive views of blame and responsibility, its understandings of mercy and forgiveness, and its particular ways of responding to evil. The Seminar I am proposing, Punishment, Politics, and Culture, will examine the nature and limits of punishment and its place in the "American story." This Seminar will address questions about punishment that go to the heart of humanistic inquiry.

Project fields:
Law and Jurisprudence

Seminars for K-12 Educators

Education Programs

$168,376 (approved)
$168,376 (awarded)

Grant period:
10/1/2010 – 9/30/2011