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Sociology and Criminology & Law

Rebecca Hanson

Dr. Hanson holds a joint appointment with the Department of Sociology and Criminology and the Center for Latin American Studies. Along with Richard Kernaghan, she is coordinator of the specialization in Crime, Law, and Governance in the Americas for the Master of Arts in Latin American Studies program. She has conducted research on participatory democratic neighborhood experiments, socialist ideology in Venezuela, civilian police reform, police militarization and its impacts on organized crime, and the effects of police-community meetings on citizen attitudes and police behavior. Dr. Hanson’s other area of research analyzes sexual harassment and ethnographic fieldwork. Along with Dr. Patricia Richards (University of Georgia), she is working on a project that analyzes women’s diverse experiences with harassment in the field to critique the epistemological foundations of ethnographic methodology. She has extensive experience writing on violence, crime, and policing in the Global South for public policy outlets, publishing in venues such as Insight Crime, the Christian Science Monitor, and Foreign Policy in Focus. Since 2012 she has been a moderator of and contributor to the Washington Office on Latin America’s blog Venezuelan Politics and Human Rights. Her scholarly publications can be read in Journal of Latin American Studies, Crime, Law, and Social Change, and Sociological Forum.

Personal Website

Office: Turlington 3360

Spring 2020 Office Hours:  Wednesday 1:00-3:00 pm

Research interests:

Crime and Citizen Security; Political Sociology; Human Rights; Global Studies; Urban Sociology; Social Movements and Citizen Participation; Gender; Latin America; Qualitative Methods


  • CCJ 4934/SYA 4930 Policing the Americas
  • LAS 4935/LAS 6938 Crime and Violence in Latin America
  • LAS 4935/LAS 6938 Law and Order in Latin America
  • SYA 7933 Qualitative Methods