CJRC Associate Professor Molly Dragiewicz on Big Ideas domestic violence forum


CJRC Associate Professor Molly Dragiewicz, coordinator of QUT’s Graduate Certificate in Domestic Violence

will speak at Domestic Violence – Unheard Voices
presented by Caxton Legal Centre and QUT Law Faculty
Part of our Justice in Focus Series.
Thursday, 29 September 2016 from 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM (AEST) Register here
Banco Court, QEII Courts of Law Complex – 415 George Street, Brisbane City, QLD 4000 – View Map

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School of Justice Staff present at Australian Women’s and Gender Studies Association conference


Head of School and Professor Kerry Carrington, Associate Professor Molly Dragiewicz, and Associate Lecturer Harriet Horsfall will speak on Gendered justice: What needs to change? at the Australian Women’s and Gender Studies Association Conference 2016. See the full program here. Read more

Recently published: Domestic Violence on #qanda: The ‘‘Man’’ Question in Live Twitter Discussion on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Q&A


Associate Professor Molly Dragiewicz from the School of Justice, Faculty of Law and Professor Jean Burgess, Director of the QUT Digital Media Research Centre and Professor of Digital Media in the Creative Industries Faculty recently published: Domestic Violence on #qanda: The ‘‘Man’’ Question in Live Twitter Discussion on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s Q&A in volume 28.1 of The Canadian Journal of Women and the Law.

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In the news: The Brisbane University battling domestic violence


The School of Justice was featured on Channel 7 news on Tuesday 5 May 2015.

Watch the segment here: The Brisbane University battling domestic violence

The story highlighted QUT’s new domestic violence unit was developed by Associate Professor Molly Dragiewicz, Director of the Crime and Justice Research Centre. The elective has an enrollment of 230 justice, social work, law, and psychology students. It features practitioners who guest lecture about their areas of expertise. They provide real world perspectives on working in this area. It is the first interdisciplinary domestic violence unit in Queensland.

The School of Justice has proposed a four unit Graduate Certificate in Understanding Domestic Violence which it hopes to launch in 2016.

Crime on a desert island (part five): Music about crime

This Old Guitar
Image cca Alan Levine This Old Guitar

by Dean Biron

Music and crime are most commonly associated through notions of illegal downloading, the lyrics and lifestyles of “gangsta” rappers, or heavy metal musicians supposedly exhorting young people to deviance. In the 1980s, links between certain types of rock music and antisocial or even criminal behaviour were widely feared, to the extent that in the US, the wives of several government officials – most infamously Tipper Gore, partner of Senator Al Gore – founded the Parents Music Resource Centre, in an attempt to deny children access to music they claimed threatened the very foundations of society.

Of course, music and crime have long between intertwined. Countless classical opera scores are drenched in blood. In Giuseppe Verdi’s Rigoletto (1851), for instance, the protagonist enters into a bargain with an assassin, with unforseen deadly consequences. A century on, the Mississippi Delta blues musician Robert Johnson was said to have sold his soul to the devil: the result was a handful of legendary songs and an early death, allegedly poisoned by a jealous husband.

In the 1960s, The Beatles revelled in their image of four clean-cut and fun-loving young men, whereas the Rolling Stones were considered to best represent the malevolent, dangerous side of rock and roll. The status of the latter seemed only to be confirmed by the 1969 Altamont Speedway concert, where the Hells Angels – hired as “stage security” by the band for $500 worth of beer” – went on a spree of violence which culminated in a fan being stabbed to death in front of the stage (images captured in the 1970 documentary film Gimme Shelter). Yet the Beatles too were unsuspectingly dragged into the dark regions of sixties counterculture when petty criminal and cult leader Charles Manson used their songs “Helter Skelter” and “Piggies” as incitements to mass murder.

Musicians have also used the song form as social commentary, often in an attempt to right perceived injustices. Bob Dylan wrote several of these, the most famous being “Hurricane,” about boxer Ruben Hurricane Carter’s wrongful conviction for murder.

Here are 10 pieces of music with explicit links to crime:

  1. Send me to the ‘lectric Chair” by Bessie Smith (1927)
  2. “Hurricane” by Bob Dylan (1976)
  3. “Tired Eyes” by Neil Young (1975) – story of drug deal gone wrong.
  4. “Millie Pulled a Pistol on Santa” by De la Soul (1992) – the “daisy” rap band expanded their repertoire in this gripping tale of sexual abuse.
  5. “The Mercy Seat” by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (1988) – the “mercy seat” refers to the electric chair.
  6. “Rape Me” by Nirvana (1993) – an anti-rape song, though it was subsequently banned from radio because of the title.
  7. “Nebraska” by Bruce Springsteen (1982) – story of mass killer Charles Starkweather.
  8. “Midnight Rambler” by the Rolling Stones (1969)
  9. “Poptones” by Public Image Ltd (1979)
  10. Kristallnacht by John Zorn (1993) – a musical meditation on the “night of broken glass”, the notorious Nazi crime perpetrated against the Jews in November of 1938.






Crime on a desert island (part two): The serial killer


Blog post by Professor John Scott

The serial killer is a modern invention and an integral part of crime and popular culture. The rise of the serial killer shadows that of the detective and the serial killer shares many traits with the classic detectives, such as mystical or almost supernatural abilities. Indeed, superheroes such as Batman may represent an amalgam of both.

The daddy (few pop cultural serial killers have been women) of al serial killers is Jack the Ripper, the epithet given to a perpetrator (or perpetrators) who committed at least five brutal murders of women in London in the year 1888 (over 125 years ago). Of course, what we all know about Jack the Ripper has nothing to do with the actual crimes themselves, or the lives of the victims, or of the men who investigated them (detectives were always men back then). Our knowledge comes from stories we have read, television shows we have viewed, narratives both specific to the case and narratives, which have somehow been influenced by it. The Jack the Ripper case has become so infamous and has been so long pondered over as to have led to the coining of the term “ripperology” – the study of the Jack the Ripper crimes.

The serial killer is a relatively rare beast in society and it goes without saying (the statistics have proven this over and over again) that we are far more likely to experience violence at the hands of someone known to us in our home environment than from a sadistic psychopath who targets strangers. Yet our overarching fear of the random killer persists. Part of this fear is a distrust of modernity and all that it promised in terms of the ability to at once explain and control crime. The serial killer captures the unpredictability of crime, its randomness and the inability of scientific methods to predict and control crime. And while we may deplore their crimes, there is no doubt that we attracted to their presence on the screen.

  1. Psycho (1960). Directed by Alfred Hitchcock (1899-1980) and featuring Anthony Perkins (1932-1992) as killer Norman Bates.
  2. Silence of the Lambs (1991). Directed by Jonathan Demme (1944-) and featuring Anthony Hopkins (1937-) as killer Hannibal Lecter.
  3. Jack the Ripper (1988). Mini-series featuring Michael Caine (1933+) as historical figure Chief Inspector Frank Abberline of Scotland Yard.
  4. Zodiac (2007). Directed by David Fincher (1962-) and based on Zodiac murders in the san Francisco bay area of 1960s-1970s.
  5. M (1931). Early German film directed by Fritz Lang (1890-1076) and starring Peter Lorre (1904-1964) in a career defining role as a deranged child murderer.
  6. Se7en (1995). Directed by David Fincher (1962-) and featuring Brad Pitt (1963-) as a police officer tracking a serial killer.
  7. 10 Rillington Place (1971). Based on true events and directed by David Fleischer (1916-2006) with Richard Attenborough (1923-2014) as real-life serial killer John Christie.
  8. The Boston Strangler (1968).  Based on true events and directed by David Fleischer (1916-2006) with Tony Curtis (1925-2010) as real-life serial killer Albert DeSalvo.
  9. Badlands (1973).  Directed by Terrance Malick (1943) and based on events which occurred in South Dakota in 1958.  Starring Sissy Spaceck (1949-) and Martin Sheen (1940-).
  10. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974). Directed by Tobe Hooper (1943-), this is the mother of all ‘slasher’ films

Next week: Court Room Drama