'A Tragedy of Monumental Proportions': Indigenous Australians and the sentencing process

Douglas, Heather and Corrin, Jennifer (2010) 'A Tragedy of Monumental Proportions': Indigenous Australians and the sentencing process. Social & Legal Studies, 19 2: 197-215. doi:10.1177/0964663909353141

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Author Douglas, Heather
Corrin, Jennifer
Title 'A Tragedy of Monumental Proportions': Indigenous Australians and the sentencing process
Formatted title
‘A Tragedy of Monumental Proportions’:1 Indigenous Australians and the sentencing process
Journal name Social & Legal Studies   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0964-6639
Publication date 2010-06
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1177/0964663909353141
Open Access Status
Volume 19
Issue 2
Start page 197
End page 215
Total pages 19
Place of publication London, United Kingdom
Publisher Sage Publications
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Subject C1
180120 Legal Institutions (incl. Courts and Justice Systems)
940406 Legal Processes
1602 Criminology
1801 Law
Formatted abstract
This article explores the tensions between the principles of rehabilitation and community protection in the sentencing of Aboriginal people, especially in the context of dysfunctional and remote Aboriginal communities. In order to explore these tensions, the article draws on the issues raised in a recent Australian case involving the sentencing of nine young Aboriginal men and boys who pleaded guilty to the rape of a 10-year-old girl in a remote Aboriginal community in the far north of Australia. Although many Aboriginal women have called for greater protection for women and children by the criminal justice system, they have argued for community restoration rather than incarceration. This article suggests that, in the context of remote Aboriginal Australia, the focus on victim protection has served to entrench oppression through the continued sentencing preference of incarceration. The article concludes with a call for the decolonisation of justice and explores options by which this might be achieved.
© The Author(s) 2010.
Keyword Indigenous people
Community protection
Decolonisation of justice
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
TC Beirne School of Law Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 3 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 4 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Wed, 15 Sep 2010, 15:23:44 EST by Jane Malady on behalf of T.C. Beirne School of Law