Therapeutic Jurisprudence in Criminal Justice: The Price of Letting One Hundred Flowers Bloom

Amanda Wilson


Like other “alternative” justice mechanisms, the advancement of therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ) in criminal justice has largely been driven by practice. On the level of theory, however, TJ remains inchoate. This article critically examines some of the problems stemming from the underdevelopment of TJ across its philosophical and empirical dimensions and how this has impacted on the conceptualisation and application of TJ in the criminal justice setting. In the process, it sheds new light on the relationship between TJ and criminal justice, identifying critical areas in need of further development. It concludes by considering how the shortcomings identified could be addressed in order for it to fully bloom.

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