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Lecture 4

CRM 1301 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Cesare Beccaria, Jeremy Bentham, Feudalism

Course Code
CRM 1301
Carolyn Gordon

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CRM1301 Classical Criminology
Economic/Social Context: Life During the 18th Century
- Shift from feudalism to early forms of capitalism
Feudalism lords and serfs
Society is starting to become more democratic
- Protestant Reformation
Martin Luther said that man is able to interpret the Bible without the help of the Church
The Churches role diminishes
People are free thinkers and entities on their own
- Population growth
More dense
More heterogeneous (differences)
- Need new forms of social control
Social bonds that held people together are loosening
Public shaming no longer effective
People no longer show up
You do’t ko the people ho are eig shaed so it has o effet o ou
Intellectual Context: The Enlightenment (1650-1800)
- Philosophers and philosophy
- Reason is idealized
Challenged the idea that God ruled everything
People started questioning social organizations
Secular ways of believing
- Doctrine of free will
People’s fate is ot deteried  soe higher eig
- Rationality
People can anticipate the consequences of different actions and weigh the pros and
- Natural rights exist
Everyone has equal rights, not just the upper class
Their rights need to be protected
Democratic state
- Humans are hedonistic
People who want to maximize their pleasure and minimize their pain
People are egotistical
Do You Agree or Disagree?
- Offenders make choices about committing crimes based on the anticipated rewards
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Classical criminologists agree with this
- Individuals will decide NOT to commit crimes when the risks are too high or the rewards are not
Classical criminologists agree with this
What is the Social Contract?
- An unwritten agreement shared by everyone in a society in which they give up some freedom
for security
- The government is necessary for this contract
- Society should work for the individual
- Ex. following the speed limit instead of driving 100km on an 80km road because it is safer for
- What is a crime?
Breaking of social contract
Society has agreed that the state is authorized to punish
- Punishment is based on demonstrable social harm
According to Classial Theorists…
- What should be the punishment for homosexuality?
There is no demonstrable social harm, so no punishment
- The seriousness of crime is measured by the harm done to society
- If there are no demonstrable victims, there should be no punishment
- According to the Demonic perspective
No difference between immorality, deviance, and sin
What Was the Justie Syste Like Durig the Middle Ages?
- Torture
- Shaming
- Inhumane
- Lead to false confessions
- No legal representations
- Found guilty before the trial
- Puishet did’t fit the rie
- Only needed half-proof to determine guilt
Critique of Criminal Justice During The 18th Century
- Capital punishment
Negative effect –people thik thigs like, If I’ goig to die either a, I ight as ell
urder soeoe too
Judges reluctant to convict too many crimes punishable by death
Limitations of effectiveness pick-pocketers would capitalize on the large crowds
watching the executions
- Transportation
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