Provost Faculty Scholarship Recipient
Duane Ruth-Heffelbower, J.D.
"All the theories of criminology--all of them--assume a ruling class, and the purpose of the criminological theory is to allow the ruling class to control the social deviancy of some other class within society. They all do the same thing," says Duane Ruth-Heffelbower, director of the graduate peacemaking and conflict studies program. "None of those theories of criminology really speak to restorative justice."
So Ruth-Heffelbower is investigating a relatively new theory of criminology that offers an alternative. Anarchist criminology takes its name from the Greek meaning "without a ruler."
According to Ruth-Heffelbower, it is "criminology without reference to a ruling class, which oddly enough is kind of what restorative justice is. Anarchist criminology would say it's not the ruler who's harmed. The offense is against the community and particular individuals within the community. And restorative justice tries to return the right to decide what justice is to the community."
He will publish his findings as an article highlighting this connection that will eventually be published in a collection on the subject. "This would be the first time that the concept of anarchist criminology has been tied to restorative justice and it shows how the two are actually the same, basically," he says.
FPU created the Provost Research Grant in 2008 to encourage faculty to develop their scholarship. Awards have been given in fields from science to religion and have funded the creation of new music and the translation of ancient languages. Read the full Provost Faculty Scholarship report which includes all the faculty recipients and an overview of their work.