Austin Sarat is Associate Provost and Associate Dean of the Faculty and Cromwell Professor of Jurisprudence and Political Science, Amherst College. He is interested broadly in the intersections of American law and politics. He is currently studying the phenomenon of botched executions, the fate of lethal injection as an execution technology, and the ways stories of exoneration from death row are told in popular culture.
Sarat uses the death penalty as a lens through which to view ideas about responsibility and blame, pain and its proper uses, race and fairness, mercy and the possibilities of redemption. Sarat recently completed a book entitled The Death Penalty on the Ballot: American Democracy and the Fate of Capital Punishment.
Sarat is also conducting research on current challenges facing American democracy and the rule of law
His public writing has appeared in The Guardian, Slate, The New Republic, The Bulwark, CNN.com, and the Los Angeles Times, among other places..
Sarat teaches a first-year Seminar, Secrets and Lies as well as a course on Disaster, Catastrophe and Democracy and a class about murder.