The Role of Race, Gender, and Social Class in Deciding Who Dies

Wanda Foglia, Rowan University

Prior research has found that the demographic characteristics of jurors affect how they decide capital cases. This paper will review prior findings and analyze quantitative and qualitative results from interviews with jurors who actually decided capital cases. It will compare black and white jurors who served as members of the same jury, and examine attitudes towards punishment, responsibility for the sentence, and perspectives on the crimes, victims, and defendants. The interaction of race with gender and social class also will be explored.

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Updated 05/20/2006