Quinney, Richard 1934-

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QUINNEY, Richard 1934-

PERSONAL: Born May 16, 1934, in Elkhorn, WI; son of Floyd and Alice (Holloway) Quinney; married Valerie Yow (a professor of history), 1958 (divorced, 1989); married Solveig Schavland, May 3, 1991; children: Laura, Anne. Education: Carroll College, B.S., 1956; Northwestern University, M.S., 1957; University of Wisconsin, Ph.D., 1962.

ADDRESSES: Home and office—345 Rolfe Rd., De Kalb, IL 60115-3149.

CAREER: St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY, instructor in anthropology and sociology, 1960-62; University of Kentucky, Lexington, assistant professor of sociology, 1962-65; New York University, New York, NY, associate professor, 1965-67, professor of sociology, 1967-72, on leave for research and writing at University of North Carolina, 1972-74; Brown University, Providence, RI, visiting professor, 1975-78, adjunct professor of sociology, 1978-83; Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA, distinguished visiting professor, 1978-79, adjunct professor of sociology, 1980-83; Northern Illinois University, De Kalb, professor of sociology, 1983-97, professor emeritus, 1998—. Visiting professor, Brooklyn College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, 1974-75, and University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee, 1980. Has given numerous guest lectures. Has been research director and chairperson of numerous grants and studies. Has presented papers at numerous annual meetings; photography has been exhibited in North Carolina, New York, and Rhode Island.

MEMBER: American Sociological Association (member of executive council of criminology section, 1972-74, chairperson, 1977-78; member of committee on committees, 1974-76), Society for the Study of Social Problems (chairperson of Crime and Juvenile Delinquency Division, 1975-77), American Academy of Religion, Midwest Sociological Society, Eastern Sociological Society, Rhode Island Historical Society, State Historical Society of Wisconsin.


Social and Cultural Profile of Lexington and Fayette County, Kentucky (pamphlet), City-County Planning Commission of Lexington and Fayette County, 1963.

(With Marshall Clinard) Criminal Behavior Systems: A Typology, Holt (New York, NY), 1967, 2nd edition, 1973.

(Editor) Crime and Justice in Society, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1969.

The Social Reality of Crime, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1970; Transaction (New Brunswick, NJ), 2001.

(With Marshall Clinard) The Problem of Crime, Dodd (New York, NY), 1970, 2nd edition (with John Wildeman) published as The Problem of Crime: A Critical Introduction to Criminology, Harper (New York, NY), 1977, also published as The Problem of Crime: A Peace and Social Justice Perspective, Mayfield (Mountain View, CA), 1991.

(Author of introduction) Nicholas M. Regush, The Drug Addiction Business: A Denunciation of the Dehumanizing Politics and Practices of the So-Called Experts, Dial (New York, NY), 1971.

Critique of Legal Order: Crime Control in Capitalist Society, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1974, new edition, with introduction by Randall G. Shelden, Transaction (New Brunswick, NJ), 2002.

(Editor) Criminal Justice in America: A Critical Understanding, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1974.

Criminology: Analysis and Critique of Crime in America, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1975, 2nd edition, 1979.

(Author of foreword) James A. Inciardi, Careers in Crime, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1975.

Class, State, and Crime: On the Theory and Practice of Criminal Justice, Longman (New York, NY), 1977, 2nd edition, 1980.

Capitalist Society: Readings for a Critical Sociology, Dorsey Press (Homewood, IL), 1979.

Providence: The Reconstruction of Social and Moral Order, Longman (New York, NY), 1980.

Social Existence: Metaphysics, Marxism and the Social Sciences, Sage (Beverly Hills, CA), 1982.

(Editor, with Piers Beirne) Marxism and Law, Wiley (New York, NY), 1982.

Journey to a Far Place: Autobiographical Reflections, Temple University Press (Philadelphia, PA), 1990.

(Editor, with Harold E. Pepinsky) Criminology As Peacemaking, Indiana University Press (Bloomington, IN), 1991.

For the Time Being: Ethnography of Everyday Life, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 1998.

Bearing Witness to Crime and Social Justice, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 2000.

(With Kevin Anderson) Erich Fromm and Critical Criminology: Beyond the Punitive Society, University of Illinois Press (Urbana, IL), 2000.

Borderland: A Midwest Journal, University of Wisconsin Press (Madison, WI), 2001.


Walter C. Reckless, The Crime Problem, Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1967.

Walter C. Reckless and Simon Dinitz, Critical Issues in the Study of Crime, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1968.

Harwin L. Voss, editor, Society, Delinquency, and Delinquent Behavior, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1970.

Anthony L. Guenther, editor, Criminal Behavior and Social Systems: Contributions of American Sociology, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1970, 2nd edition, 1976.

Bernard Haring, The Church on the Move, Alba House, 1970.

Harwin L. Voss and David M. Petersen, Ecology, Crime and Delinquency, Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1971.

Jack D. Douglas, editor, Crime and Justice in American Society, Bobbs-Merrill (Indianapolis, IN), 1971.

Erwin O. Smigel, editor, Handbook on the Study of Social Problems, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1971.

Jack D. Douglas and Robert A. Scott, editors, Theoretical Perspectives on Deviance, Basic Books (New York, NY), 1972.

Peter Woll, editor, American Government: Readings and Cases, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1972, new edition, 1978.

Erich Goode and Harvey A. Faberman, editors, Social Reality, Prentice-Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1973.

Charles M. McCaghey and R. Serge Denisoff, editors, Deviance, Conflict, and Criminality, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1973.

Nicholas N. Regush, editor, Visibles and Invisibles: A Primer for a New Sociological Imagination, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1973.

Jack Sussman, Crime and Justice, AMS Press, 1974.

Israel Drapkin and Emilio Viano, editors, Victimology, Lexington Books (New York, NY), 1974.

Ronald L. Akers and Richard Hawkins, editors, Law and Control in Society, Prentice-Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1974.

Charles E. Reasons, editor, The Criminologist: Crime and the Criminal, Goodyear Publishing, 1974.

Abraham S. Blomberg, editor, Current Perspectives on Criminal Behavior: Original Essays in Criminology, Knopf (New York, NY), 1974, 2nd edition published as Current Perspectives on Criminal Behavior: Essays on Criminology, 1981.

James A. Inciardi, Jr., and Harvey A. Segal, Emerging Social Issues, Praeger (New York, NY), 1975.

Richard L. Hensel and Robert A. Silverman, editors, Perception in Criminology, Columbia University Press (New York, NY), 1975.

Stuart H. Traub and Craig B. Little, editors, Theories of Deviance, F. E. Peacock, 1975, 2nd edition, 1980.

Robert A. Silverman and James J. Teevan, Jr., Crime in Canadian Society, Butterworth, 1975.

F. James Davis and Richard Stivers, editors, The Collective Definition of Deviance, Free Press (New York, NY), 1975.

Klaus Lunderssen and Fritz Sack, I Die selektiven Normen der Gesellschaft, Suhrkamp Verlag (Frankfurt, Germany), 1975.

Joe Hudson and Burt Galaway, editors, Considering the Victim, Charles C Thomas, 1975.

Ian Taylor, Paul Walton, and Jock Young, editors, Critical Criminology, Routledge & Kegan Paul (London, England), 1975.

Derrall Cheatwood and Therold Lindquist, The Human Image: Sociology and Photography, State University of New York Press (Albany, NY), 1976.

Leon Radizinowicz and Marvin E. Wolfgang, editors, Crime and Justice, Volume I, Basic Books (New York, NY), 1977.

Timothy J. Curry and Alfred C. Clarke, Introducing Visual Sociology, Kendall/Hunt, 1977.

Arthur B. Shostak, editor, Our Sociological Eye: Personal Essays on Society and Culture, Alfred Publishing, 1977.

Leonard D. Savitz and Norman Johnson, editors, Crime in Society, Wiley (New York, NY), 1978.

M. David Ermann and Richard Lundman, editors, Corporate and Governmental Deviance, Oxford University Press (Oxford, England), 1978.

Saul D. Feldman, editor, Deciphering Deviance, Little, Brown (Boston, MA), 1978.

Ronald A. Farrell and Victoria Lynn Swigert, editors, The Substance of Social Deviance, Alfred Publishing, 1978.

Delos H. Kelly, editor, Deviant Behavior: Readings in the Sociology of Deviance, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 1979.

Lord Lloyd of Hampstead, Introduction to Jurisprudence, 4th edition, Stevens & Sons, 1979.

Scott G. McNall and Gary N. Howe, editors, Current Perspectives in Social Theory: A Research Annual, Volume II, JAI Press, 1981.

William E. Thornton, Jr., Jennifer James, and William G. Doerner, editors, Delinquency and Justice, Scott, Foresman, 1982.

Contributor of articles, book reviews, and photography to numerous periodicals, including Social Forces, American Journal of Sociology, Infinity, Rural Sociology, Mirror, American Sociological Review, Social Problems, Contemporary Crises, and American Behavioral Scientist. Associate editor, Victimology, 1976—, (and member of board of directors) The Insurgent Sociologist, 1977—, Contemporary Crises, 1977—, and California Sociologist, 1977—; advisory editor, Offender Rehabilitation, 1976—, and Qualitative Sociology, 1978—; contributing editor, Crime and Social Justice: A Journal of Radical Criminology, 1974-78; corresponding editor, Theory and Society, 1974-77; member of editorial board, Criminology, 1978-81.

SIDELIGHTS: About the body of Richard Quinney's work, David O. Friedrichs commented in Radical Criminology: The Coming Crisis: "Quinney's contributions to criminology to date might be classified, theoretically and chronologically, as conventional, conflict oriented, critical, neo-Marxist, and most recently prophetic. This singular intellectual career over a period of approximately two decades may be virtually without parallel in the discipline. But whatever direction his work now takes, Quinney has undeniably made a fundamental contribution to the development of radical criminology." Friedrichs concluded: "With rare intellectual courage, immense scholarly erudition, awesome imagination, and remarkable productiveness, Quinney has explored the outer reaches of the criminological frontier. Even if Quinney is 'wrong' or 'one-sided' in many instances, the conviction remains that his work and thought will continue to be discussed, will continue to inspire and provoke, long after his more timid if technically more 'correct' criminological brethren are forgotten or relegated to obscure footnotes."

As Friedrichs pointed out, Quinney's more recent work is thought-provoking and prophetic. In the prologue to Providence: The Reconstruction of Social and Moral Order, Quinney expresses his belief that the advanced capitalist society is rapidly approaching its demise, primarily because its attendant secularism alienates humanity from itself by extinguishing the spiritual dimension of existence. "Now in these days," he writes, "the word of God is seldom heard, and visions are not often granted. We are reaching the end of an age; the advanced capitalist society with its highly secular and utilitarian sensibility is coming to an end. The contradictions of the existing social and moral order and the personal and collective struggle are bringing about a new human history."

"The task ahead," Quinney suggests in Social Existence: Metaphysics, Marxism and the Social Sciences, "is to create the symbols that will allow us as human social beings to find our place in the world. The contemporary crisis is both material and symbolic: a social existence cannot be constructed without attending to both the conditions of material existence and the symbols for social and spiritual existence. Our hope is for a social existence filled with a meaning that relates to an order in the universe. Our immediate work is in the reconstruction of symbols in the struggle for social existence."

Since becoming a professor emeritus, Quinney's publications have frequently focused on personal matters. For the Time Being: Ethnography of Everyday Life, which saw print in 1998, discusses aspects of his own life and family history in the way an anthropologist might relate an ethnography of a foreigner. Though Roger Chapman in the Journal of Popular Culture questioned the relevance of a sociologist's personal reflections in general, he felt that For the Time Being "is . . . a very beautifully written work." He went on to conclude that "seldom does one find such warmth and introspection coming from an academic." Quinney continued in this vein with 2001's Borderland: A Midwest Journal. This volume discusses his return to his boyhood hometown in Wisconsin, and includes photographs Quinney took of the landscape surrounding his home. The book also deals with what the author feels it means to be a Midwesterner. Lori D. Kranz, discussing Borderland in the Bloomsbury Review, praised the "reflective tone of the prose" and labeled its bibliography, which contains all the writers Quinney quotes from, a "treasure trove."



Clinard, Marshall B., and Robert F. Meier, Sociology of Deviant Behavior, 5th edition, Holt (New York, NY), 1979.

Inciardi, James A., editor, Radical Criminology: The Coming Crisis, Sage (Thousand Oaks, CA), 1980.

Liska, Allen E., Perspectives on Deviance, Prentice-Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1981.

Quinney, Richard, Providence: The Reconstruction of Social and Moral Order, Longman (New York, NY), 1980.

Quinney, Richard, Social Existence: Metaphysics, Marxism and the Social Sciences, Sage (Thousand Oaks, CA), 1982.


Bloomsbury Review, March-April, 2002, Lori D. Kranz, review of Borderland: A Midwest Journal.

Issues in Criminology, spring, 1971.

Journal of Popular Culture, summer, 2001, Roger Chapman, review of For the Time Being: Ethnography of Everyday Life, pp. 240-241.*

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