The Process is the Punishment

Handling Cases in a Lower Criminal Court
Malcolm Feeley

First published in 1979, this classic work set the standard for later court studies. Focusing on the workings of the New Haven court system, Feeley explores fundamental questions about how justice is administered in our society and reexamines conventional theories about how the criminal justice system functions. Examining the process and the players, Feeley's analysis, firmly rooted in organizational theory and open systems theory, describes the dynamics of the courthouse and emphasizes interdependencies, adaptation, institutional maintenance, and adversarial relationships in an effort to make sense of the process as it is experienced by those who participate in it.
"This book's findings are well worth the attention of the serious criminal justice student, and the analyses reveal a thoughtful, probing, and provocative important contribution to the debate on the role and limits of discretion in American criminal justice. It deserves to be read by all those who are interested in the outcome of the debate." —Jerome H. Skolnick, American Bar Foundation Research Journal
MALCOLM M. FEELEY is professor of law and director of the Center for the Study of Law and Society at the University of California, Berkeley.


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