Reflections on researching remorse: unearthing an epistemological unconscious

Kate Rossmanith, Steven Tudor, Richard Weisman, Michael Proeve

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


For the past two decades, research on the role of emotion in the law has steadily grown. Despite this, methodological approaches tend to be disparate and embryonic; meanwhile the question of emotion has been largely overlooked in criminological research. This chapter seeks to advance the methodological project of examining emotions in law and criminal justice by considering what is involved for researchers to orient themselves to such an object of study – in this case, to researching remorse. The authors use this chapter to explore what it is to make epistemological claims about remorse in the justice system. They consider their own approaches in philosophy, sociology, psychology, performance studies and creative writing. The chapter takes as its starting point a key tenet from hermeneutic thought: the notion that in ontological terms, if researchers are to understand anything, they must already find themselves “in” the world “along with” that which is to be understood. Following Pierre Bourdieu's commitment to reflexivity, and in the spirit of “unearthing an epistemological unconscious”, each author attempts to make explicit their disciplinary aims and assumptions alongside their own more personal psychic and moral “equipment”.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRemorse and criminal justice
Subtitle of host publicationmulti-disciplinary perspectives
EditorsSteven Tudor, Richard Weisman, Michael Proeve, Kate Rossmanith
Place of PublicationLondon ; New York
PublisherRoutledge, Taylor and Francis Group
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9780429001062
ISBN (Print)9780367028763, 9781032104768
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Publication series

NameNew Advances in Crime and Social Harm


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