A critical appraisal of responses to Maori offending

Tauri, Juan Marcellus & Webb, Robert (2012) A critical appraisal of responses to Maori offending. The International Indigenous Policy Journal, 3(4), pp. 1-16.

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This article critically analyses the role that criminological theory and specific policy formulations of culture play in the New Zealand state’s response to the over-representation of Māori in the criminal justice system. Part one provides an overview of the changing criminological explanations of, and responses to, Māori offending in New Zealand from the 1980s onwards and how these understandings extended colonialist approaches to Māori and crime into the neo-colonial context. In particular, we chart the shift in policy development from theorising Māori offending as attributable to loss of cultural identity to a focus on socio-economic and institutional antecedents and, finally, through the risk factors, assessment, and criminogenic needs approaches that have gained prominence in the current policy context.

In part two, the focus moves to the strategies employed by members of the academy to elevate their own epistemological constructions of Māori social reality within the policy development process. In particular, the critique scrutinises recent attempts to portray Indigenous responses to social harm as “unscientific” and, in part, responsible for the continuing over-representation of Māori in New Zealand’s criminal justice system. The purpose of this analysis is to focus the critical, criminological gaze firmly on the activities of policy makers and administrative criminologists, to examine how their policies and approaches impact on Māori as an Indigenous people.

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ID Code: 55599
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Maori offending, Critique, Policy, Administrative criminology
ISSN: 1916-5781
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > CRIMINOLOGY (160200)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Schools > School of Justice
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 Please consult the authors
Deposited On: 13 Dec 2012 22:50
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2012 09:11

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