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There are conflicting theories and opinions about the laws, rules, and customs that regulate everyday life and about how to deal with those who violate accepted standards. Formal punishment of individuals as an organized reaction to lawbreaking prompts serious debates concerning justice versus utility, universality versus particularity, and consensus versus conflict. The problematic nature of punishment has been a major philosophical and practical concern in Western societies for centuries. Who has the right to punish? How should society punish? How much punishment is just? Punishment involves agencies and representatives of government depriving people of their liberty. It is a means of social control intended to cause a measure of "suffering" to those who violate the law and harm others. Punishing a member of society raises serious moral and ethical concerns; it also raises questions about social issues such as equality and discrimination. Punishment is a component of the criminal justice system commonly taken for granted. Most individuals have an opinion about punishment based on their general view of what is right and what is wrong. There are, however, invisible aspects of punishment that affect not only those who break the law and those directly affected by the incarceration of the lawbreaker but also the society that decides what type of punishment is meted out. The theoretical arguments and justifications for punishment reveal the values of society concerning justice, human rights, social equality, and relations between the state and its citizens.
An acclaimed criminologist examines America's ongoing war against violent crime, arguing that ever-increasing rates of imprisonment have not reduced--and will not reduce--crime rates and offering a range of tested alternatives based on deterrence. Tour.
In this brilliant work, the most influential philosopher since Sartre suggests that such vaunted reforms as the abolition of torture and the emergence of the modern penitentiary have merely shifted the focus of punishment from the prisoner's body to his soul.
Money is the most frequently means used in the legal system to punish and regulate. Monetary penalties outnumber all other sanctions delivered by criminal justice in many jurisdictions, imprisonment included. More people pay fines than go to prison and in some jurisdictions many of those in prison are there because of failure to pay their fines. Therefore, it is surprising how little has been written in the Anglophone academic world about the nature of money sanctions and their specific characteristics as legal sanctions. In many ways, legal innovations related to money sanctions have been poorly understood. This book argues that they are a direct consequence of the changing meaning of money. Considering the ‘meaninglessness’ of modern money, the book aims to examine the history of changing conceptions in how fines have been conceived and used. Using a set of interpretative techniques sensitive to how money and freedom are perceived, the genealogy of the penal fine is presented as a story of constant reformulation in response to shifting political pressures and changes in intellectual developments that influenced ideological commitments of legislators and practitioners. This book is multi-disciplinary and will appeal to those engaged with criminology, sociology and philosophy of punishment, socio-legal studies, and criminal law.
Punishment is an area of increasing importance and concern to both citizens and politicians. How do we decide what should be crimes? How do we decide when someone is responsible for a crime? What should we do with criminals? These are the main questions raised in this book.
This book argues that punishment's function is to communicate a message about an offenders' wrongdoing to society at large. It discusses both 'paradigmatic' cases of punishment, where a state punishes its own citizens, and non-paradigmatic cases such as the punishment of corporations and the punishment of war criminals by international tribunals.

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