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date: 30 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines Critical Race Theory (CRT) and its influence on particular areas of criminal law in the United States. It first explains what CRT is and how it has contributed to legal scholarship, showing how it emerged in 1989 as a response to the continuing salience of race and racism despite the legal reforms made during the civil rights era of the 1960s. It then considers how CRT has been used by criminal law scholars to address issues such as crimes and discretion, self-defense, rape, jury nullification, and mass incarceration. Finally, it shows how empirical evidence and social science data are helping to revitalize the CRT movement.

Keywords: critical race theory, criminal law, race, racism, crimes, discretion, self-defense, rape, jury nullification, mass incarceration

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