JST337 Crimes of the Powerful (8)

This subject introduces students to criminological debate and theory on crimes of the powerful. It examines the role of power in the criminal justice system and in wider society. It questions definitions of crime and harm, using case studies to illustrate these debates. This subject takes a national and international approach to understanding power and the crimes of the powerful. It looks at issues of white collar crime, industrial harms, environmental harms, state crime, genocide, war, torture, incarceration and immigration detention. This subject will also look at responses to these types of crime and harm, including international criminal justice. It will critically analyse the relationship between power and crime on a local and global level.


Session 1 (30)
On Campus
Bathurst Campus
Port Macquarie Campus
Bathurst Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: JST337. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security

Assumed Knowledge


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to explain and critically analyse the role of power in society and the criminal justice system;
  • be able to critically engage with key theories of power, control and harm;
  • be able to demonstrate an interdisciplinary approach to understanding power and crimes of the powerful;
  • be able to critically discuss key topics in the subject and analyse how these topics illustrate issues of crime, harm and power;
  • be able to articulate their understanding clearly and cogently;
  • be able to use the work of major theorists and authors to inform their understanding;
  • be able to demonstrate a growing professional awareness by being professional in all communications and conduct with academic staff and other students, and through presentation of assignments


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Topics such as: Theories of power, critical criminology, global criminology; definitions of crimes of the powerful and harm; corporate and white collar crime; industrial harms, workplace rights; environmental law and environmental harms; state crime: international obligations, protests, resistance and riots, war, genocide, torture; immigration detention, 'crimmigration', incarceration, rendition; international law and international criminal courts; international law enforcement; responding to state crime: truth and reconciliation, recognition; regulation of the powerful will be covered.

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of JST337 in Session 1 2019. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Online quiz a
Case study
Online quiz b
Research essay

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: October 2020. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.