Dr. Ely Aaronson

עילי ארונסון

Ely Aaronson is a senior lecturer at the University of Haifa, Faculty of Law. His scholarship employs historical, sociological, and comparative perspectives to explore the political underpinnings and social consequences of criminalization and penal policies. His first book From Slave Abuse to Hate Crime: The Criminalization of Racial Violence in American History (Cambridge University Press 2014; paperback ed. 2019) examines the role played by debates about the criminalization of racial violence in shaping broader patterns of thinking about racial justice from the slavery era to the present. His recent work has examined the historical transformation of patterns of transnational governance of criminal justice policies from the early twentieth century to the present. He is the co-editor (with Gregory Shaffer) of The Transnational Legal Ordering of Criminal Justice (Cambridge University Press 2020). He was recently awarded a research grant by the Israeli Science Foundation for his new project, examining the long history of debates about the decriminalization of cannabis in the US and in international law.

Aaronson received his PhD from the London School of Economics, his LL.M from NYU, and an MA in humanities (specialization in the history of ideas) from Tel Aviv University (sumna cum laude). He held visiting research and teaching positions at UC Berkeley (Center for the Study of Law and Society), Sydney Institute of Criminology, and the LSE. At the University of Haifa, he teaches courses in the fields of comparative legal history, sociology of criminal law, globalization and law, and socio-legal theory. He also served as the editor of the peer review journal Law and Government, and as the academic supervisor of the Prisoners’ Rights Clinic.

  • PhD, London School of Economics and Political Science (2010)
  • LLM, New York University (2004)
  • MA, (Humanities), Tel Aviv University, sumna cum laude (2005)
  • LL.B, University of Haifa, magna cum laude (2000)

Fields of research and teaching

  • Sociology and history of criminal law and criminal justice
  • Comparative and transnational criminal justice
  • Law and globalization
  • Law and race
  • Law and social theory
  • Law and film

Recent awards and prizes

  • 2011-2014 Alon Fellowship for Outstanding Junior Scientists
  • 2014-2017 ISF Grant for the project: the impact of globalization on domestic criminalization policy

Books

Author:

  1. From Slave Abuse to Hate Crime: The Criminalization of Racial Violence in American History (Cambridge University Press, 2014).

Editor:

  1. Drug Decriminalization, Legalization, and International Law (with Gregory Shaffer). American Journal of International Law Unbound 114: 275 (2020)
  2. The Transnational Legal Ordering of Criminal Justice (with Gregory Shaffer) (Cambridge University Press, 2020)
  3. Criminalization and Citizenship in Contemporary Perspective (with Peter Ramsay) Special issue of New Criminal Law Review (2010).

 

Articles and Book Chapters:

  1. The Symbiotic Tensions of the Carceral-Regulatory State : The Case of Cannabis Legalization (with Gil Rothschild-Elyassi, Regulation and Governance, 2021)
  2. Israeli Criminal Law in the Era of Globalized Crime-Control Policymaking (Tel Aviv University Law Review, 2021).
  3. Theorizing Global Penal Change, in Elgar Handbook of Comparative Criminal Justice (Claire Hamilton and David Nelken, eds.) (2021)
  4. Defining Crimes in a Global Age: Criminalization as a Transnational Legal Process (with Gregory Shaffer). Law and Social Inquiry _ (2021).
  5. Introduction to the Symposium on Drug Decriminalization, Legalization, and International Law (with Gregory Shaffer). American Journal of International Law Unbound 114: 275 (2020)
  6. Transnational Legal Ordering of Criminal Justice: Mapping the Field (with Gregory Shaffer). In Gregory Shaffer and Ely Aaronson, eds., The Transnational Legal Ordering of Criminal Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2020) 3-51.
  7. The Strange Career of the Transnational Legal Ordering of Cannabis Prohibitions. UC Irvine Journal of International, Transnational and Comparative Law 4:79 (2019).Reprinted in Gregory Shaffer and Ely Aaronson, eds., The Transnational Legal Ordering of Criminal Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2020).
  8. Rights Consciousness as an Object of Historical Inquiry (with Arianne Renan Barzilay). Law and Social Inquiry 44:505 (2019).
  9. Criminal Responsibility and the Idea of Historical Progress. Critical Analysis of Law 4:190 (2017).
  10. Racial Violence and the Politics of Criminalization Reform: Response on Comments on From Slave Abuse to Hate Crime. Jerusalem Review of Legal Studies 14: 214 (2016).
  11. Criminal Law, Ethnic Stratification and Political Legitimacy: Between Cinematic Representations and Institutional Reform. University of Haifa Interdisciplinary Law Journal 7:267 (2014).
  12. Determinate Sentencing and American Exceptionalism: The Political and Institutional Underpinnings and Effects of Cross-National Differences in the Regulation of Sentencing Discretion. Law and Contemporary Problems 76: 161 (2013).
  13. The Limits of Criminalisation as a Vehicle of Egalitarian Social Reform in Late-Modern Liberal Democracies. New Criminal Law Review 13: 286 (2010).
  14. Introduction: Criminalization and Citizenship in Contemporary Perspective (with Peter Ramsay). New Criminal Law Review 13: 181 (2010).
  15. The Reshaping of Israeli Progressive Politics in the Age of Judicialization. Tel Aviv University Law Journal 31: 157 (2008).
  16. Adjudication as a Polemic Praxis: A Sociological Account. Haifa Law Review 9: 497 (2006).
  17. Law as Film: The Transformation of How Justice is Seen to be Done in the Age of Moving Image (with Shulamit Almog). Bar Ilan University Law Journal [Hebrew] 22: 9 (2005).
  18. Law as Film: Representing Justice in the Age of Moving Image. Canadian Journal of Law and Technology 3: 1 (2004).

 

Book Reviews

  1. Book Review: Wendy Brown, Regulating Aversion: Tolerance in the Age of Identity and Empire, 2(2) Criminal Law & Philosophy pp. 201-206 (2008)

 

Doctoral Dissertation

  1. The Role of “Pro-Black” Criminalization in Facilitating and Constraining the Mobilization of Egalitarian Racial Reform, US 1669-2008 supervised by Professor Nicola Lacey and Professor Robert Reiner, awarded by the London School of Economics

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