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This new text will encourage students to develop a deeper understanding of the context and the current workings of the criminal justice system. The first part offers a clear, accessible and comprehensive review of the major philosophical aims and sociological theories of punishment, the history of justice and punishment and the developing perspective of victimology. In Part Two, the focus is on the main areas of the contemporary criminal justice system - including the police, the courts and judiciary, prisons and community penalties. The active engagement of students with the material covered distinguishes this text from others in the area and makes it a real teaching resource for lecturers and tutors. There are regular reflective question breaks which enable students to consider and respond to questions relating to what they have just read.