The Sentencing of Children
a book by Max Travers, published by New Academia Publishing

About The Sentencing of Children

Even when it does not lead to riots or looting, the problem of youth crime continues to concern welfare and justice professionals across the developed world. Following in the tradition of ethnographers, such as Aaron Cicourel and Robert Emerson, this book provides a detailed description of how professional groups collaborate in reaching sentencing decisions in children’s courts.

Based on observation of hearings in the three Australian states of Tasmania, Victoria and New South Wales, it describes the practical considerations in sentencing minor, and repeat offenders, and the mitigating factors that influence magistrates. These include economic circumstances, family problems and psychological difficulties, but also youthfulness itself.


The study conveys the immense institutional effort spent in trying to reduce or contain the problem of youth offending in a developed, well-ordered society, which we largely take for granted. It supplies a well-documented insight into what actually happens inside children's courts, and the challenges in addressing youth offending.


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