From presence to participation: the role of the juror reimagined

Scott, Jenny (2014) From presence to participation: the role of the juror reimagined. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

This thesis is an interdisciplinary exploration of the role of the jury in the criminal trial in which I draw together three areas: law - specifically jury research; education - specifically Paulo Freire’s critical pedagogy; and interactive theatre arts – specifically Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed. My vision is to develop a process which integrates the jury as meaningful participants in the trial and, to realise that, I have used the practical devices for communication in the work of Freire and Boal. My work is conceptual and so the ideas put forward in the thesis are meant to be read as ideological visions rather than proposals which are based on empirical research.
First, by mapping out the current research into juror understanding I make the claim that, as it currently stands, the jury do not participate in the criminal trial. Second, by using Paulo Freire’s critical pedagogy as a catalyst, I begin to assess the issues of communication through a critical pedagogical lens which results in my opinion that there is a real need to focus more on how we communicate rather than persistently focusing on what is being communicated in a criminal trial. Finally, having developed heightened awareness of the need for being receptive to the methods of our communication I develop more practical solutions for integrated participation by looking to Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed in particular the use of his Joker as facilitator of communication.
By the end of the thesis I have reimagined trial by jury, moving from a structure which has little or no room for jury participation to one which recognises the potential of the juror as an autonomous, thinking, human being, capable of his task, and which treats him, not as a subsidiary but rather as an integral part of the process. In doing that I challenge the fundamental validating factor so often associated with trial by jury: the belief that jurors actually participate in the trial. My research has dual benefits: first by using the methods developed by Freire and Boal I have expanded the boundaries in research techniques thus allowing us to come closer to the jury and, I argue, to understand them at a more genuinely nuanced level. Second, my research offers real tools for jurors to use, tools for communication through participation which allow them to gain clarification, when they feel they require it, as the trial is in progress.
Ultimately, as I communicate my arguments, I hope that the reader can appreciate the shift from presence to participation as I reimagine the role of the jury in the criminal trial.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Jury research, critical pedagogy, forum theatre, Augusto Boal, Paulo Freire, performance and performativity.
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
N Fine Arts > NA Architecture
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences
Supervisor's Name: Leverick, Professor Fiona and Farmer, Professor Lindsay
Date of Award: 2014
Depositing User: Dr Jenny Scott
Unique ID: glathesis:2014-4982
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 27 Feb 2014 14:38
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2017 09:45
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/4982

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