Criminology Lecture Notes

Started to look at peoples facial featureshead as

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Started to look at people’s facial features/head as that may suggest they are criminals – if someone looks like a criminal, then they may be a criminal . Sought to find things that were indicative of a criminal profile . Cesare Lombroso (1835-1909) . Focused on the body/face of the criminal . Humans descended from other life forms – other animals . If we are related to animals, we could be LIKE animals . Activism: reappearance of the characteristics of an early life form in a later one . Ex. someone may not look like their parents but they look like their grandparents . Ex. monkey characteristics may reappear in a later generation . Natural world – there are a lot of plants and animals which were criminal in their behavior – plants and animals do not have human morality . Plants out there that kill things/eat them . Dawn of Criminality – murderer is kind of like a venus flytrap – a killer
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. Mexican Honey Ants will eviscerate their opponents to eat the honey inside – so humans will kill people because of these earlier life forms . Female Dove – if she engages in adulterous relationships, then she will often kill her mate . Monkeys – pick-pockets . Stigmata – occurrence of an activism . If someone has animal characteristics, then this will suggest that they are activist, and suggest that they behave like animals . Feet like monkeys (which he thought prostitutes had) indicated criminal behavior . Tattoos – immunity to pain (from tattoos) suggests primitiveness – early tribes wore all kinds of feathers and shells – Europeans were boring and therefore, more superior . While positivist criminology does focus on finding the causes of crime, there are implications for the criminal justice system . There’s a certain class of people that are born criminals (in his biology – will be a recidivist), but there are still other people that simply make mistakes . Indeterminate sentencing – Lombroso would go to courts and jails to look to see if they would be a recidivist – based on what you looked like . Lombroso found that people with mental disabilities prevent people from acting civilized, not necessarily activistic . Miserable conditions of the poor could lead to criminal activity – as well as wealth (vanity, self-indulgence) . Lombroso concluded (at the end of his life) that these born criminals are a minority (only about 35% of all criminals are really born that way) – found that things external to a person could affect crime . Criminal justice system operated according to principle of indeterminate sentencing . Seen a major shift towards determinate sentencing over the past decades . Largely due to a spirit of punitiveness in American society – wanting to punish criminals . Government can ALWAYS punish criminals (vengeance) and people will support that . Lombroso’s studies tended to be racist/prejudice against certain groups . Review . Classical Criminology . Assumption of rational/freely choosing beings . Concerned about the administration of criminal justice systems . Positivist .
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