Fall 2021/Spring 2022 LSC Emphasis

In the 2021–2022 year, the following courses make up the emphasis, along with year-long participation in the Socio-Legal Studies Workshops:

This course is meant to train students to think more critically about the complicated relationships between gender, law, and society. Across a range of contexts and levels of analysis, we will consider the importance of dissecting law with a gendered lens and ask: what are the underlying assumptions to law when we see it through a gendered lens? Using interdisciplinary methods and sources (e.g. cases, law review debates, book chapters, empirical reports), this course seeks to engage a set of interrelated questions including: Is gender even a useful category of analysis? What happens when we consider law reform, critique, and resistance as parts of feminist discourse? Are laws - and rights that flow from law - useful across contexts? What are the limits to emancipation? What frameworks offer solutions of legal alterity? How is alterity limited?
This seminar introduces students to the study of punishment from a sociological perspective. Our overarching aim will be to develop a critical knowledge of how social theories and sociological methods are used to analyze penal laws, policies, and practices and their cultural products and social effects. We will focus on different ways to think about and examine punishment, with an eye to how the seminar readings may be relevant to students’ own research. The course complements classic studies with the latest scholarship in the punishment and society field. While the course begins with the Durkheim-Marx-Foucault trinity, the intent is to address it critically, focusing on both its strengths and its limits, before reading recent research on gender, race, and punishment that works to broaden the scope beyond the field’s grand theories and classic texts.

The seventh cohort includes six students, representing schools from across UCI:

Spencer R. Elam
Adviser: Christopher Seeds

Spencer Elam is a third year student at UCI School of Law. Her research interests involve ideas of safety and danger. More specifically, her research contemplates how perceptions and assessments of safety or danger shape the criminal legal system through laws themselves or how they're applied.

Jordan Grasso
Adviser: Catherine Sameh

Jordan Grasso is a doctoral student in Criminology, Law and Society. Their research interests include topics of police violence and militarism, as well as the creation of alternative legal cultures and the methods of safety in queer spaces. More specifically, Jordan has previously analyzed the relationship between military equipment transfers to California police departments and outcomes of police violence. Currently, they are exploring lesbian/queer bars and events as sites of alternative legal cultures with a specific focus on participants' conceptions of safety in these spaces and the tensions that arise between the formal law and informal queer norms.

Ekaterina Moiseeva
Adviser: Ann Hironaka

Ekaterina (Katya) Moiseeva is a PhD student at the Department of Criminology, Law and Society. Her work focuses on the unfolding process of cannabis legalization in California cities, bringing to the fore the importance of local actors and decisions. More specifically, her research delves into the complex nature of social change and unpacks the mechanisms that explain why local jurisdictions are more or less likely to allow legal cannabis businesses within their borders.


Amelia Roskin-Frazee
Adviser: Sharon Block

Amelia Roskin-Frazee is a doctoral student in Sociology and a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow. Her research focuses on how individual identities affect how institutions (the criminal justice system, schools, etc.) respond to gender-based violence. Her recent work looks at how the U.S. Sex Offender Registry operates as a weapon of state violence against queer women of color.

Lyric Russo
Adviser: Aziza Ahmed

Lyric Russo is a third year PhD student in the Social Ecology Core program. Her research focuses on understanding, intervening, and preventing gender-based and community violence, as well as identifying culturally informed strategies for response. She is particularly interested in examining how interpersonal violence and experiences of adversity are further confounded when people experience discrimination and other forms of oppression through both formal and informal systems. Her work is rooted and informed by her experiences working with survivors of intimate partner violence, family violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking through both nonprofit organizations and research projects.

Yvette Vasquez
Adviser: Sameer Ashar



Rabie Kadri
Law Centers Manager
(949) 824-2370