Lori Sexton (she/her)

Lori Sexton
Associate Professor and Chair
Humanities and Social Sciences

Contact Info
Cherry Hall 437
Theories and experiences of punishment, Correctional policy and practice, Law and Society


Lori Sexton is an Associate Professor of Criminal Justice and Criminology and an affiliate of the Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program at the University of Missouri – Kansas City. Her interests lie at the intersection of criminology and sociolegal studies, with a specific focus on prisons, punishment and the lived experience of penal sanctions. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Justice, the University of Missouri Research Board and the Fletcher Jones Foundation, and has been published in Criminology, Theoretical Criminology, Punishment & Society, Journal of Crime and Justice, and various other scholarly outlets.  She recently co-authored a book with Dr. Kristi Holsinger, entitled Toward Justice: Broadening the study of criminal justice, which is designed as a reader for CJC Capstone courses. Toward Justice encourages students to engage critically with conceptions of justice that go beyond the criminal justice system, in order to cultivate a more thorough understanding of the system as it operates on the ground in the imperfect world—where people aren’t always rational actors, where individual cases are linked to larger social problems, and where justice can sometimes slip through the cracks. 

Academic credentials

B.S., Human Development, Cornell University (2005)
M.A., Criminology, University of Pennsylvania (2006)
Ph.D., Criminology, Law and Society, University of California, Irvine (2012)

Research interests

  • Theories and experiences of punishment
  • Correctional policy and practice
  • Transgender populations and criminal justice
  • Law & Society