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SOC371H5 (18)

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Questions for the lecture 2 Chapter 21Why did Durkheim take punishment to be a central object of sociological analysis p 2324He believed punishment was an institution which was connected to the very heart of society It was a tangible example of the collective conscience that both expressed and regenerated societys values Sociologists could gain systematic insight on the ineffable core of moral life around which the community and social solidarity are formed It was a key to the analysis of society itself He can view it as a moral phenomenon operating within the circuits of moral life as well as carrying more mundane social and penal functions2How did Durkheimian interpretation of the modern situation differ from that of social conservatives p 2425Durkheim concerns were with the changing forms of solidarity as societies evolved with the rise of individualism specialization of social functions and the decline of religion Social conservatives believed that society was destined to tear itself apart in the clash of individual interests and instead advocated for a return to the traditional forms of morality and religious faith Durkheim did not agree with Spencer who believed society could operate without collective morality instead believing that there needed to be moral framework but its form and content had to reflect the current conditions of social organization 3Why was Durkheimian conception of punishment in its simplest form not taken seriously p 26 27aDurkheims account of punishment is generated from his general social theory which has been rejected as problematic in modern day and is therefore dependant on it iAssume not entirely dependant on his general theory so it can survive if there is criticism to the general theory bHis discussion on punishment implies and presents and evolutionary account of the history of penal law based on inaccurate and misleading dataiExamine the moral basis of penal law eg involvement of onlookers even if his arguments are unconvincing cHis account seems to be more in line with primitive ancient small scale societies than modern societies iAssume primarily an account on the motives functions and significance rather than historical development 4Why did Durkheim see punishment as a social institution that is first and last a matter of morality and social solidarity 2830Strong bonds of morality cause punishments and punishments result in the reaffirmation and strengthening of social bonds Like most institutions punishment is understood in terms of its mundaneinstrumental tasks eg control of crime enforcement of law Much of social morality is unspoken taken for granted He wanted to make it more self conscious so it could be better preserved and developed Crimes are acts that violate the collective conscience
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