Document Type

Article - On Campus Only

Publication Date



Mutually critical conversations between theology, ethics, and law have been underdeveloped with respect to juvenile justice. I appropriate recent theological work on the rights and agency of children to critique adultcentric approaches to juvenile justice. I focus on recent trends in juvenile justice, including sentencing juveniles to life without the possibility of parole. In developing my polemic against such policies, I analyze Graham v. Florida and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and their implications for juvenile justice. The final section constructively proposes juvenile justice reforms and advocates for the elimination of juvenile life sentences without parole.

Recommended Citation

Rothchild, Jonathan. "Childhood without Life, Life without Childhood: Theological and Legal Critiques of Current Juvenile Justice Policies." Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics, vol. 33 no. 1, 2013, p. 83-103. doi:10.1353/sce.2013.0006.