skip navigation

PUBLICATIONS

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

 

NCJ Number: 50697 Find in a Library
Title: UNDER SENTENCE OF DEATH
Journal: AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION JOURNAL  Volume:64  Dated:(AUGUST 1978)  Pages:1259-1265
Author(s): A I BOROWITZ
Corporate Author: American Bar Association
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 7
Sponsoring Agency: American Bar Association
Type: Historical Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: LITERATURE FROM THE 18TH, 19TH, AND 20TH CENTURIES IS REVIEWED TO TRACE THE EVOLUTION OF VIEWS ON CAPITAL PUNISHMENT. IT IS CONCLUDED THAT WRITERS FROM ALL THREE PERIODS OPPOSED IT ON HUMANITARIAN GROUNDS.
Abstract: DURING THE 18TH CENTURY, THE HEYDAY OF PUBLIC HANGINGS IN ENGLAND, HENRY FIELD WROTE STRONGLY AGAINST THE PRACTICE BECAUSE HE FELT IT HAD LITTLE DETERRENT VALUE. HE OFFERED SUGGESTIONS FOR REFORM TO END THE CIRCUS-LIKE ATMOSPHERE WHICH HE FELT WAS INHUMAN AND DEBASING. SAMUEL JOHNSON SEEMED TO SUPPORT PUBLIC HANGING, BUT WORKED CEASELESSLY TO TRY TO SAVE A CLERGYMAN CONVICTED TO HANG FOR FORGERY. THE AMERICAN WRITER FRANCES TROLLOPE AND THE ENGLISH WRITERS SIR SAMUEL ROMILLY, WILLIAM THACKERAY, AND CHARLES DICKENS ALL WROTE AGAINST PUBLIC EXECUTION. DICKENS CONDUCTED A CONTINUING LETTERS-TO-THE-EDITOR CAMPAIGN CITING STATISTICS SHOWING THAT COUNTRIES WITHOUT PUBLIC EXECUTIONS DID NOT HAVE HIGHER CRIME RATES. ARTHUR KOESTLER'S 'REFLECTIONS ON HANGING' AND ALBERT CAMUS'S 'REFLECTIONS ON THE GUILLOTINE' ARE THE 20TH CENTURY WORKS REVIEWED. BOTH ARE PASSIONATELY AGAINST CAPITAL PUNISHMENT FOR HUMANITARIAN REASONS. (GLR)
Index Term(s): Capital punishment; Deterrence; England; France; Literature; United States of America
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50697

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.