SOC211H5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Unintended Consequences, Extreme Measures, Solitary Confinement

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4 Apr 2012
School
Department
Course
Professor
Classical School of Criminology Jan. 19/12
- They are external forces that act on people other then divine forces which is
social forces (Political, Economic, and etc..)
- Two Key thinkers: Jeremy Bentham and Cesare Beccaria both philosopher
Human Nature
- Free will (choose what to do)
- Children are seen as not to have free will because they don’t understand
what they are doing
- Hedonistic: seek pleasure (broader term other then physical), avoid pain
and individuals choose their action based on this principle
- Rational: cost/benefit calculation based on the knowledge they have
analysis
- You can choose to perform a crime and gain something from it like money
(separation between morality and rationality)
Crime and Society
- Society is also a victim of offenders’ crimes
- Offenders violate social contract:
Each individual should give up a part of their pleasure/interest for that of
everyone
- Security, peace
- We all understand this and agree with it (social contract
Punishment
- Is necessary to secure social order
- As a deterrent= prevents the criminal action
- Send a message to other offenders
- Changes the balance of pleasure and pain in favour of pain
- It must be: swift, certain, proportionate
Neoclassical Theory
- Aimed at improving the classical theory
Added three new concepts:
1. Mitigating factors: considering into account the difference between crimes
and their in determining punishments
2. Past record: repeat offenders should receive harsher punishments
3. Differences in free will: one’s degree of “free” will (choosing what to do)
depends on their life circumstances (class, power, prestige)
- Poverty= limited alternatives
- Increases chances of committing crime
- Rich=more alternatives
Rational Choice Thoery
- People are rational
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