Criminology Lecture Notes

Criminology Lecture Notes - Criminology Lecture Notes...

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Criminology Lecture Notes Lecture 1/23/2012 . The Classical and Positivist Schools (A history of criminology) . Classical Schools . What is human nature? . Human nature could tell you what is right and what is wrong . Intellectual Background . Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) (Magnum Opus Suma Peologica) – writing from a Catholic religious perspective – history of the law started from a right/wrong of the law . Humans were essentially good – had an inevitable goodness which caused them to have a behavior tendency towards good . Anything that was associated with crime, would be against human nature . God put essential goodness into human beings and law should therefore be god’s law . Crime for Aquinas is a moral failure – immorality suggests someone about a person . Punishment had to be severe and uncompromising because there is no compromising about god’s law (had to be absolute) . Most gruesome and torturous punishments during this period of time . State is acting on the part of god when punishing – giving state a lot of power in inflicting these kinds of punishments . Thomas Hobbes (1588-1678) . Hobbes believed that humans by nature were bad – believed that humans were selfish and looking out for themselves . What makes society all come together and get along? . Natural state of society would be a war of all against all . BUT, humans were able to overcome this by engaging in a Social Contract (Humans would be inclined to inflict serious crime on others, but people entered a social contract to prevent this warring, thus allowing people to create contracts to not inflict crime on each other) . Humans give up their power to the state – only the state can police people . Even social contract is self-interested because one gives up their power in order for security – they don’t want others to kill them so they don’t kill others . Classical Criminology . Cesare Beccaria (1738-1794) . “The first criminologist” – laid the foundation for Classical Criminology . On Crimes and Punishments . Development of Mercantilism (state sponsored trade monopolies – traders granted monopolies to get the exclusive right to trade in certain colonies) . A lot of people really became wealthy – new wealthy traders were called middle class (in between old privileged aristocracy and the poor folk) . A lot of people were thrust into poverty
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. Criminal justice system was ineffective in protecting the rights of this new middle class because it protected the old aristocracy – system was corrupt . What are the principles of capitalism? Rationality (people are constantly involved in rational calculations based on where you make more money), calculability, predictability . People were no longer bound by tradition and to use their own rationality and reason . People make rational choices as to what they are going to do – thus Beccaria believed that the criminal justice system must take this into account . Crime is a violation of a social contract . Jurisprudence should be based on the quality before the law .
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