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NCJ Number: 213010 Find in a Library
Title: Sources of Variation in Pro-Death Penalty Attitudes in China: An Exploratory Study of Chinese Students at Home and Abroad
Journal: British Journal of Criminology  Volume:46  Issue:1  Dated:January 2006  Pages:119-130
Author(s): Bin Liang; Hong Lu; Terance D. Miethe; Lening Zhang
Date Published: January 2006
Page Count: 12
Type: Report (Study/Research) ; Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: Samples of Chinese students at home and abroad were surveyed about their attitudes toward the use of the death penalty in contemporary China.
Abstract: Findings showed that the majority of Chinese students favored the death penalty as a criminal punishment in China; however, the strength of this support diminished when alternative punishments were listed for particular offenses. Belief in the deterrent effect of the death penalty was the strongest factor in determining attitudes toward the death penalty. Even when given evidence that life imprisonment without the possibility of parole would provide a similar deterrent effect, the majority of students still preferred the death penalty. Men who regarded the crime problem in China as very serious and who attended college in the United States were significantly more supportive of the death penalty in China; however, this effect of gender, attitude, and context disappeared when the death penalty was compared with other punishments for particular offenses. This strong support for the death penalty among young Chinese may be due, in part, to China's long historical preference for collective values and the primary use of punishment as retribution. One study sample consisted of 60 college students from a Chinese university. They were surveyed in the summer of 2004. The other sample consisted of 57 college students originally from China who were attending an American university. The dependent variables were two measures of the extent of support for the death penalty in China. Both absolute and relative judgments about capital punishment were determined, depending on the availability of alternative punishments for specific offenses. Independent variables were related to measures of individual and contextual characteristics. A series of univariate, bivariate, and multivariate analyses were conducted to assess the strength of pro-death penalty attitudes and their correlates. 2 tables and 22 references
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Capital punishment; China; Foreign criminal justice research; Public Opinion of Corrections
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