SAGE Publishing, 2019 Lecture Notes Chapter 1: The Philosophical and Ideological Underpinnings of Corrections Learning Objectives 1.1 Describe the function of corrections and its philosophical underpinnings 1.2 Explain the function and justification of punishment 1.3 Differentiate between the classical and positivist schools in terms of their respective stances on punishment 1.4 Define and describe retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, rehabilitation, and reintegration 1.5 Explain the distinction between the crime control and due process models 1.6 Understand the usefulness of a comparative perspective Chapter Summary Corrections is a social function designed to hold, punish, supervise, deter, and possibly rehabilitate the accused or convicted. Corrections is also the study of these functions. Although it is natural to want to exact revenge ourselves when people do us wrong, the state has taken over this responsibility for punishment to prevent endless tit-for-tat feuds. Over social evolution, the state has moved to more restitutive forms of punishment that, while serving to tone down the community’s moral outrage, tempers it with sympathy. Much of the credit for the shift away from retributive punishment must go to the Classical School of criminology, which was imbued with the humanistic spirit of the Enlightenment. The view of human nature (hedonistic, rational, and possessing free will) held by thinkers of the time was that punishment should primarily be used for deterrent purposes, that it should only just exceed the gains of crime, and that it should apply equally to all who have committed the same crime regardless of any individual differences. Opposing classical notions of punishment are those of the positivists, who rose to prominence during the 19th century and who were influenced by the spirit of science. Positivists rejected the philosophical underpinnings regarding human nature of the classicists and declared that punishment should fit the offender rather than the crime.
SAGE Publishing, 2019 The objectives of punishment are retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, rehabilitation, and reintegration, all of which have come in and out of favor over the years. Retribution is simply just deserts--getting the punishment one deserves, with no other justification needed. Deterrence is the assumption that the threat of punishment causes people not to commit crimes. We identified two kinds of deterrence: specific and general. The effects of deterrence on potential offenders depend to a great extent on the contrast between the conditions of punishment and the conditions of everyday life. Incapacitation means that the accused and convicted cannot commit further crimes (if they did so in the first place) against the innocent while incarcerated. Incapacitation works only while offenders are behind bars, but we should be more selective about who we incarcerate.
You've reached the end of your free preview.
Want to read all 74 pages?