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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 156126 Find in a Library
Title: Republican Criminology and Victim Advocacy
Journal: Law and Society Review  Volume:28  Issue:4  Dated:(1994)  Pages:765-776
Author(s): J Braithwaite; P Pettit
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 12
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: In responding to Scheingold, Olson, and Pershing (see NCJ- 156125), this article presents the axioms and theorems of republican criminology, notes the failure of Washington State's Community Protection Act (CPA) to reflect such criminology, and discusses how the victims' movement can reflect the tenets of republican criminology.
Abstract: The first axiom of republican criminology is that the goal of the criminal justice system is "dominion." Drawing upon an 18th-century republican phrase, "dominion" requires "the absence of arbitrary power" on the part of any other person or corporate body to interfere in a person's affairs. The second axiom is that the criminal justice system should be designed so that this goal is maximally promoted overall in the fashion associated with means-end rationality; the system's institutions, procedures, and policies should be such that there is more rather than less dominion enjoyed in the society at large. The third axiom is that if dominion is to be promoted by the criminal justice system, then all components of that system ought to be taken into account in planning systemically for the promotion of dominion. Based on these axioms and the subsequent eight theorems outlined, the authors support the criticisms of Scheingold, Olson, and Pershing regarding Washington State's CPA, which involves a punitive effort to lengthen the imprisonment of sex offenders and identify and stigmatize them in the community after their release. The authors disagree with Scheingold, Olson, and Pershing in linking republican criminology to the victim advocacy strategy that largely produced the CPA. The authors argue that republican criminology seeks a balance between offender and victims' rights, so that arbitrary interference in the lives of both offenders and victims is prevented or mitigated. 43 references
Main Term(s): Victims rights
Index Term(s): Criminal justice system effectiveness; Criminal justice system reform; State criminal justice systems; State laws; Washington
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