Alex Benn

Alex Benn

Senior Lecturer in Law


Law Course

Contact information


I teach the course, Criminal Law, to Univ’s first-year and Senior Status students. The course focuses on the general principles of criminal liability, as well as some of the major criminal offences and defences. In particular, I try to put the law in its broader context as a tool of powerful groups, which involves looking at the widespread discrimination that exists in criminal justice.

I also teach the module, ‘Hate Crime and Discrimination’, for the Final Honours School option, Advanced Criminal Law. Set up recently, the module aims to analyse the concepts of ‘hate’ and ‘discrimination’. It considers how criminal law could address discrimination or if it simply does more harm than good.


Selected Publications

Book Chapters

• With D. Young, ‘The Loss or Destruction of Evidence’ in Young, Young, Corker and Summers on Abuse of Process in Criminal Proceedings (2022, 5th edn), pp 80-118

Journal Articles

• ‘Besting Monarchy: The Anti-Classism Argument’ (2023) The Political Quarterly,
• ‘Classism as Hate Crime: Proposing Class as a Protected Ground in Criminal Law’ (2021) 10 Criminal Law Review 809
• ‘The Big Gap in Discrimination Law: Class and the Equality Act 2010’ (2020) 3(1) Oxford Human Rights Hub Journal 30,

Journal Case Notes and Comments

• ‘Attorney General’s Reference on a Point of Law (No. 1 of 2022)’ (2023) 1 Criminal Law Review 58
• ‘The “Colston Four”, Proportionality and the Concerns that Linger’ (2023) Journal of Criminal Law,
• ‘R (Ngole) v Sheffield University’ (2018) 7(2) Oxford Journal of Law and Religion 351
• ‘R (A and B) v Secretary of State for Health’ (2017) 6(3) OJLR 631
• ‘Re JS (A Child)’ (2017) 6(2) OJLR 413

Academic and Legal Websites

• ‘Criminalising Constitutional Debate? Anti-Monarchy Protests, Treason and Public Order’ (2023) UK Constitutional Law Association,
• ‘The “Colston Four” and the Walls of Criminal Trials’ (2022) OHRH Blog,
• ‘Discrimination in Criminal Justice: Four Analytical Steps for Lawyers’ (2021) Legal Lifelines,
• ‘Classism, Hate Crime and the Law Commission’s Consultation Paper 250: Lessons from Discrimination Law’ (2021) OHRH Blog,
• With C. Devlin, ‘The Maya Forstater Case and So-Called “Gender Critical” Feminism: What Was Actually Decided and What Does It Reveal about UK Discrimination Law?’ (2020) OHRH Blog,
• ‘The UK Supreme Court and the Gay Marriage Cake: Is “Indissociability” Half-Baked?’ (2019) OHRH Blog,

Other Media

• ‘Is It Time for a Law to Ban Classism?’ (also published as ‘We Prosecute Racists and Sexists. So What about Classists?’) (2023) The Independent,
• ‘Gender Non-Conformity at the Bar’ (2022) Counsel 15,
• With R. Karmy-Jones Q.C., ‘“Virginity Testing”, Hymen Surgery and Misogyny: What Should the Law Do?’ (2021) Counsel 38,
• With D. Taylor, ‘We Don’t Think John Finnis Should Teach at Oxford University. Here’s Why’ (2019) The Guardian,

Contact Univ

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