huma1825 week2 questionsfinal - Unam Akhter Sanjukta...

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Unam Akhter Sanjukta Banerjee HUMA 1825, Tutorial 2 26 September 2016 1. Identify the features of the institution of law that we take for granted today which were absent in ancient Athens. See pages 85, 87, 90, 105-112. There was no government or legitimate judicial system and citizenship was a status not earned by women, slaves, etc. Ancient Athens practiced democracy among equals by being in power of the people but they did not have officials trained and then armed to enforce law. The lack of legal training was due to the fact that there was no legal profession since there was no written law to learn or practice (Cohen, 61). Without a government, all citizens were armed and able to enforce the law. Thus, all responsibility for justice was on the people. Since there were not very many laws, judges were just average people part of the community who did not need an education or experience in the job. Only a few laws were created since people knew they were all equal and so, laws were customary (Cohen, 62). They understood that conflicts were to be dealt with as a community and only when there were disagreements about the law was it written down. In trial, there was no cross-examination, which meant that the case did not have to be supported by a lot of evidence. It was common knowledge that the witnesses were bribed and all evidence, if presented in court today, would be establish as hearsay. In contrast to modern law where judges are to remain unbiased, judgements based decisions on reputation and ultimately, if it benefited society. This leads to the idea that even if you have not done injustice, a record of committing offences would speak for itself. After the trial, the community would take a vote, not leaving enough time for the people to deliberate the different claims that were presented in court before voting. Trials were essentially popularity contests and the truth was determined by which party was the most persuasive. Today’s litigation system does not consider character relevant to making a case whereas in Ancient Greece, character, history and reputation could make or break your case. Hence, the judge and citizens were able to be persuaded or manipulated to rule in favour of the party that presented a better case, regardless if it was fictitious or not. In

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