CRJS 215 Chapter 4

CRJS 215 Chapter 4 - Chapter 4 Choice Theory The...

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Chapter 4 Choice Theory
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The Development of Rational Choice Theory Roots in the classical school of criminology developed by Cesare Beccaria. Beccaria called for fair and certain punishment to deter crime People are egotistical, self centered and therefore must be motivated by fear of punishment. Beccaria argued against marginal deterrence which refers petty offenses being subjected to same punishment as more serious crimes If not, people would be encouraged to commit more serious crime Example: If all violent crime punishable by death, robbers, rapist have little reason to stop from killing their victims. If the punishment is severe, certain and swift, greater ability to control crime.
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The Development of Rational Choice Theory The Classical Theory of Crime  The Classical Theory of Crime  Jeremy Bentham (1748-1833) believed people choose actions on  Jeremy Bentham (1748-1833) believed people choose actions on  the basis of pleasure and avoid pain (Utilitarianism) the basis of pleasure and avoid pain (Utilitarianism) Punishment should have four objectives: Punishment should have four objectives: Prevent all criminal offenses Prevent all criminal offenses When it cannot prevent crime, it should convince the offender  When it cannot prevent crime, it should convince the offender  to commit a less serious offense to commit a less serious offense To ensure that a criminal uses no more force than necessary To ensure that a criminal uses no more force than necessary To prevent crime as cheaply as possible  To prevent crime as cheaply as possible  Beccaria’s writings have been credited with the elimination of  Beccaria’s writings have been credited with the elimination of  torture during the 19 torture during the 19 th century
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The Development of Rational Choice Theory Positivist Criminologist focused on internal factors and external  Positivist Criminologist focused on internal factors and external  factors such as poverty, IQ, Education, and home life as true causes  factors such as poverty, IQ, Education, and home life as true causes  of crime. of crime. Classical principles controlled the way police, courts, corrections  Classical principles controlled the way police, courts, corrections  operated while criminologists reject classical as explanation of crime.  operated while criminologists reject classical as explanation of crime.     
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The Development of Rational Choice Theory Choice Theory Emerges  Choice Theory Emerges  Choice theory re-emerged in the 1970s Choice theory re-emerged in the 1970s What works?  Martinson failed to find examples of rehabilitation  What works?  Martinson failed to find examples of rehabilitation 
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This note was uploaded on 04/09/2008 for the course CRJS 215 taught by Professor O'toole during the Spring '08 term at Old Dominion.

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CRJS 215 Chapter 4 - Chapter 4 Choice Theory The...

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