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NCJ Number: 136381 Find in a Library
Title: Test of the Stability of Punishment Hypothesis: The Dutch Case
Journal: Journal of Quantitative Criminology  Volume:8  Issue:1  Dated:special issue (March 1992)  Pages:133-151
Author(s): J P S Fiselier
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 19
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper tests the hypothesis of the stability of punishment, as developed by Blumstein and associates, against Dutch prison data.
Abstract: Blumstein argues that several processes operate in society to result in a stable level of punishment. During periods of rising crime rates, this is accomplished either by more lenient punishment or by reducing the number of punishable acts. At times of declining crime rates, the reverse occurs. Prison data for the Netherlands do not unambiguously support the stability of punishment hypothesis of Blumstein. On the contrary, it turns out that the average daily population in penal institutions and the number of new admissions have continuously declined. In recent years, however, both series have exhibited a rising trend. This rising trend is seen as a structural change associated with stiffer sentences for drug trafficking and with negative consequences of the European unification process for the relatively mild penal climate in the Netherlands. The paper concludes with a discussion of Blumstein's hypothesis and considers the way research on the prison population should be continued. 36 references, 5 tables, and 2 figures
Main Term(s): Crime in foreign countries; Punishment
Index Term(s): Foreign correctional systems; Foreign inmates; Netherlands
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