Spring Quarter                                                                                              Professor Ross L. Matsueda

2018                                                                                                                                    227 Savery Hall

                                                                                                                   Office Hours:  Mon 2-3 Tue 5-5:30





This course seeks to develop a sociological framework for examining crime.  Consequently, we will

spend most of our time presenting and evaluating sociological theories of criminal behavior.  We will

begin by discussing the classical school of criminology, the theoretical framework underlying our legal

system.  We will then develop a legalistic definition of crime, and show how it follows from the ideas of

the classical school.  We will discuss trends in crime and incarceration and present the logic for

controlling crime using punitive methods.  Finally, we will present sociological theories of crime at the

structural level, the neighborhood level, and the individual level.  We will apply these theories to urban

crime and genocide in Darfur.  Throughout the course, we will emphasize developing critical thinking

skills when evaluating policy, theory, and research pertaining to crime.  This means going beyond

memorizing theory and research, and being able to critique and evaluate ideas.  Students will have

opportunities to apply critical thinking skills in discussions and writing assignments.




·         Provide you with an appreciation of a sociological perspective on the study of crime.

·         Provide you with an understanding of basic theories, concepts, and research methods used by


·         Show you the connection between sociological theories and ideas and real-world phenomena.

·         Allow you to simulate the work of social scientists by applying theoretical tools to case studies and

other data.

·         Make you a critical consumer of media reports and politicians’ claims about crime and crime


·         Develop your critical and analytical skills through oral participation and written assignments. 


Syllabus                           Sociology 371 Course Syllabus


Website                            http://faculty.washington.edu/matsueda/courses/371/web371s18.htm


Time & Location              TTh 3:30-4:50pm in Room 110 Kane Hall


Instructors                       Ross L. Matsueda          Francisca Gomez Baeza    Berndt Wurpts                                                                                               


Email                                         matsueda@uw.edu       fgomezb@uw.edu           wurpts@uw.edu



Office Hours                            Mon, 2-3 Tue 5:00-5:30         Tue 1-2 & by Appt    TBA

                                                      227 Savery Hall                  216A Savery Hall           229 Savery Hall


Lecture Slides                 Lecture 1:  Introduction to the Course


                                           Lecture 2:  The Classical School


                                           Lecture 3:  Definition of Crime and Criminal Law


                                           Lecture 4:  Trends in Violence and Incarceration


                                           Lecture 5:  Rational Choice and Deterrence


                                           Lecture 6:  Criminal Careers and Selective Incapacitation


                                           Lecture 7:  Social Disorganization and Cultural Transmission


                                           Lecture 8:  Urban Underclass, Social Capital, Collective Efficacy


                                           Lecture 9:  Differential Association Theory


                                           Lecture 10: Code of the Street


                                           Lecture 11: Differential Social Organization & Genocide in Darfur



Readings                          Trevino, A. Javier. 1996.  “Cesare Beccaria:  Legal Reformer.”  Pp. 13-20 in

                                           The Sociology of Law:  Classical and Contemporary Perspectives.  New York: 

                                                      St. Martin’s Press.


                                                      Radzinowitz, Sir Leon. 1966. Ideology and Crime.  New York:  Columbia University


                                                      Kauzlarich, David, and David O. Friedrichs. 2005. “Definitions of Crime.”  Pp.

                                                      273-275 in Encyclopedia of Criminology. Edited by Richard Wright and

                                                      J. Mitchell Miller. New York: Routledge.


                                                      Hemmens, Craig. 2005.  “Defenses to Criminal Liability: Justifications and Excuses.”

                                                      Pp. 377-380 in Encyclopedia of Criminology. Edited by Richard Wright and J. Mitchell

                                                      Miller. New York: Routledge.


                                                      Marshall, Chris E. 2002. “Deterrence Theory.”  Pp. 512-515 in Encyclopedia of Crime

                                                      and Punishment.  Edited by D. Levinson. Beverly Hills: Sage.


                                                      Levitt, Steven D. 2002. “Deterrence.”  Pp. 435-450 in Crime: Public Policies for Crime

                                                      Control.  Edited by J.Q. Wilson and J. Petersilia. Oakland, CA: ICS press.


                                                      Rosenfeld, Richard. 2002. “Crime Decline in Context.”  Contexts 1:25-34.


                                 Western, Bruce, and Becky Pettit. 2002. “Beyond Crime and Punishment: 

                                 Prisons and Inequality.”  Contexts 1:37-43.


Sherman, Lawrence A., and Richard A. Berk. 1984. “The Specific Deterrent Effect

of Arrest for Domestic Assault.”  Pp. 357-361 in Classics of Criminology.  Edited by

J. E. Jacoby.  Prospect Heights: Waveland.


Blumstein, Alfred, and  Jacqueline Cohen. 1987. “Characterizing Criminal Careers.” 

Science, 237:985-991.


Shaw and McKay. 1969. “Juvenile Delinquency and Urban Areas.”  Pp. 13-19 in

Classics of Criminology.  Edited by J. E. Jacoby.  Prospect Heights: Waveland.


Shaw and McKay. 1969  Differential Systems of Values.”  Pp. 193-200  in

Classics of Criminology.  Edited by J. E. Jacoby.  Prospect Heights: Waveland.


Sampson, Robert J., and William J. Wilson. 1994. "Race, Crime and Urban Inequality." 

In Crime and Inequality.  Edited by J. Hagan and R. Peterson. Stanford:  Stanford

University Press.


Sampson, Robert J. 2006. “Social Ecology and Collective Efficacy Theory.”  Pp.

132-140 in The Essential Criminology Reader.  Edited by S. Henry and M.M.

Lanier.  Boulder, CO: Westview.


Sampson, Robert J. and Stephen W. Raudenbush. 1999. “Systematic Social

Observation of Public Spaces: A New Look at Disorder in Urban Neighborhoods.”

American Journal of Sociology 105(3): 603-651.*


Wilson and Kelling. 1982. “Broken Windows:  The Police and Neighborhood Safety.”


Keizer, Kees, Siegwart Lindenberg, and Linda Steg. 2008. "The Spreading of

Disorder." Science 322:1681-1685.


Matsueda, Ross L. 2001. “Differential Association Theory,” In Encyclopedia of

Criminology and Deviant Behavior, Vol.1, edited by Clifton D. Bryant.  New York: 

Taylor and Francis.


Anderson, Elijah. 1998.  “The Social Ecology of Youth Violence.”  Pp. 79-104 in

Youth Violence.  Edited by M. Tonry and M.H. Moore.  Chicago:  University of

Chicago Press.


Matsueda, Ross L, Kevin Drakulich and Charis E. Kubrin.  2006. “Race and

Neighborhood Codes of Violence.”  Pp. 334-336 in The Many Colors of Crime:

Inequalities of Race, Ethnicity, and Crime in America, edited by Peterson,

Krivo, and Hagan.  New York:  NYU Press.


Matsueda, Ross L. 2006. “Differential Social Organization, Collective Action, and

Crime.”  Crime, Law and Social Change 46:3-33. 


Essay Assignment




Writing & Tutoring 


          The Department of Sociology Writing Center


          The Clue Writing and Tutoring Center


           McNair Graduate Advisors


          The Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity Instructional Center


          The Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity Writing Center


            The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr.



Examinations                  All exams will be objective, a combination of multiple-choice

                                           questions and short-answer questions.  The final will be

                                           cumulative, but emphasize the material after the second exam.


                                           First Exam:  Thursday April 12 in Lecture

                                           Distribution of Scores for First Exam


                                           Second Exam:  Tuesday, May 8 in Lecture

                                           Distribution of Scores for Second Exam


                                           Distribution of Scores for First & Second Exams Combined



                                           Final Exam:  Thursday, June 7, 2018 4:30-6:20pm Kane Hall 110


Study Guides                   Study Guide for the First Exam


                                           Study Guide for the Second Exam


                                           Study Guide for the Final Exam