Department of Sociology

Ilya Slavinski

M.S., London School of Economics

Ilya Slavinski



Crime, Law, and Deviance, Political Sociology, Punishment and Society, Inequality


Ilya Slavinski is a Doctoral Candidate in the Department of Sociology at the University of Texas at Austin. He is also a graduate trainee in the Population Research Center and an Ethnography Lab Fellow. Ilya received his MS in Non-Government Organizations and Development from the London School of Economics and his BA in Philosophy from Rutgers University.

Slavinski's work examines relationships between the state and its subjects, concentrating on punishment practices in misdemeanor courts. Through ethnography and in-depth interviews his dissertation examines various ways in which the state extracts resources from vulnerable populations while deploying a rhetoric of rehabilitation. This work illuminates the predatory practices that courts use to extract time and money, the ways in which this extraction affects defendants living in poverty, and the rhetoric used by state actors, particularly judges and prosecutors, to understand and justify these practices. These findings have led to the theoretical concept of predatory rehabilitation, a practice that happens in multiple arenas of state-citizen interaction.

He is also working on a multi-state project documenting the scope and unequal distribution of Legal Financial Obligations. Findings include the fact that legal fines and fees, even for misdemeanor citations, have become a defining feature of a contemporary punishment regime where racial injustice is fueled by economic inequality. 

Slavinski's work is funded by the National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Award and he has two articles published in the journals Social Problems and the Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice. 


SOC F325L • Soc Of Criminal Justice-Wb

82370 • Summer 2020
Internet; Asynchronous

Course Description

This course will provide an introduction to the American criminal justice system, its policies and procedures. The primary focus will be on the roles and functions of the police, the courts and corrections, with a special emphasis on how well or not so well the system operates. We will also spend some time on recent innovations in criminal justice policy.

The class periods will be devoted to lectures, guest speakers, and videos. The lecture material will sometimes correspond very closely with the material in the text and sometimes it will supplement the assigned readings. I encourage class discussions and questions and hope that the material will be sufficiently interesting and controversial to motivate class participation.

Grading Policy

There will be four exams - three during the session and a comprehensive final. The exams will be multiple choice/true false. The three exams during the session will count 20% toward the final grade and will consist of 50 questions. The final exam, which is comprehensive, is worth 40% and will consist of 100 questions. The exams will cover all of the material - assigned readings, lectures, guest speakers and videos.

I do not grade on the basis of need and I do not negotiate grades. If you "need" a particular grade, you can figure out what it will take to obtain that grade. There is no extra credit and it is not possible to change the exam dates.

Grades for the course are determined in the following manner.90 to 100 A80 to 89 B70 to 79 C60 to 69 D< 60 F

Regarding rounding of grades, in my book, 88.7 is not 90, 79.1 is not 80 and 57.7 is not 60. If your final grade is .5 or higher, I will round up to the next whole percent. If you are taking the course pass/fail, a pass is 60 or above.


James Inciardi, Criminal Justice,9th edition

Curriculum Vitae

Profile Pages

  • Department of Sociology

    The University of Texas at Austin
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    Austin, TX 78712-1086