While completing my undergraduate degree, I took a course in Forensic Linguistics, a class that counted towards my minor in composition and which looked at the use of language of crime 1).

My final project involved examining the death row statements of people who had been executed, half of whom had been deemed innocent posthumously ((For more information about this, check out The Innocence Project. My goal was to determine if, based off someone's “last words,” innocence or guilt could be determined.

I hesitantly suggest that it is possible to see innocence in an inmate's last words, although I doubt it's ability to be used as a method of determining whether or not someone should be executed - which is really an entirely different conversation.

Read the article here.

A poster was also created for this project, which can be viewed in PDF form here.

1) We used this fabulous book as our text