Review by Choice Review
Launched in 2011, Key Issues in Crime and Punishment, a new reference series published by SAGE, consists of five volumes. Each volume is a handbook that opens with an introduction by general editor Chambliss. Following an introduction are articles discussing 20 currently relevant subtopics, and an index. Volume 1, Crime and Criminal Behavior, looks at crime through a variety of lenses: historical contexts; policy implications; crimes "of a sensitive nature," such as hate crimes and child abuse; victimless crimes; state crimes; and Internet crime and copyright issues. Volume 2, Police and Law Enforcement, discusses the controversies surrounding police and law enforcement operations, including profiling, police brutality, Miranda rights, and interrogation practices. Volume 3, Courts, Law, and Justice covers issues ranging from DNA evidence and penalties for driving under the influence to polygraphs and restorative justice. Examples of topics from volume 4, Corrections, include capital punishment and the death penalty, clemency, cruel and unusual punishment, early release, and life sentences. In volume 5, Juvenile Crime and Justice, "each author presents arguments in favor of various programs, treatments, and punishments, counterbalancing them with opposing arguments."Articles, ranging in length from 10 to 20 pages, are signed and feature "further reading" suggestions. Contributors are primarily from academia, but their language is clear and accessible to undergraduates. The table of contents lists further subheadings for each article. Articles culminate in a discussion of the pros and cons of a particular issue; for instance, volume 3 features an article on DNA evidence, with the pro/con discussion focused on support for or opposition to expanding DNA databases. These discussions are similar to the pro/con sections published in CQ Researcher (CH, Sep'06, 44-0046), the popular current events database, now owned by SAGE. This series is recommended for all academic libraries, and will be indispensable for those with a criminal justice department. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower- and upper-level undergraduates; general readers. S. M. Metcalf Western Carolina University
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Choice Review