HUMN 7049 Violence, Culture and Criminal Justice

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 102199

Coordinator Stephen Tomsen Opens in new window

Description In recent decades, a new wave of racial, ethnic and religious violence and terrorism has been linked to rapid patterns of globalisation and tensions over group and national identities. Specific knowledge about violence and considerations about its real extent, causes and cultural meanings remain uncertain. Yet there is evidence of a recent general decline in violence with a significant role for legal and quasi-legal bodies for acknowledging injury, punishing previously 'deniable' violence and promoting reconciliation. Seminar topics in this course will include the global patterns and forms of violence; individual versus societal and historical explanations; biology, evolution and culture; gender, race and inequality; hatred, genocide, collective identity and psychoanalysis; the role of states and law in countering and condoning interpersonal and collective violence; debates about victimhood and the cultural symbols of violence and its memorialisation.

School Social Sciences

Discipline Criminology

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject


Students must be enrolled in a postgraduate program.

Assumed Knowledge

Undergraduate degree in criminology, criminal justice or a related social science area; or equivalent.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Describe evidence of the global patterns, histories and forms of interpersonal violence and collective conflict;
  2. Critically read, distinguish between, and write about rival theories of human violence;
  3. Give examples of the role of international criminal law in countering violence

Subject Content

1. Defining violence
2. The global scope and forms of violence
3. Collective violence and warfare
4. Criminology, biology and evolutionary explanation
5. Society, culture and the civilising process
6. Violence, law and masculinities
7. State violence
8. Violence, race and genocide
9. The Holocaust
10. Industrial killing and distanced suffering
11. Violence, victimhood and memory
12. Memorialising violence, truth and international justice


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Critical Review: Critical topic summaries (4) 2,000 Words 40 N Individual
Essay 3,000 Words 60 N Individual