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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 74768 Find in a Library
Title: Corrections in Asia (From UNAFEI-Resource Material Series, Number 17, 1980, P 117-133, Yoshio Suzuki, ed. - See NCJ-74759)
Author(s): W Clifford
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 17
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United Nations
Annotation: This article examines the failure of Western correctional reforms and philosophies to take root in Asia, problems in past penal policies of the West and Asia, Eastern and Western approaches to crime and the importance of traditional Asian social structure in restraining crime.
Abstract: Differences in current Western and Asian correctional outlooks are not explainable in terms of a time lag, intellectual insensitivity, the poverty of Asian countries, or a lack of understanding of the deeper issues involved. Four basic reasons are to explain the failure of Western changes in corrections policies to be passed to the East. Eastern societies lack pressure groups lobbying for changes in corrections policies. In addition, unlike the West, Asian societies do not believe that prison rehabilitation policies have failed. Moreover, Eastern societies have not experienced fragmentation in their moral consensus. Furthermore, Eastern cultures have an emphasis upon obligations, as opposed to individual rights. The heritage of disreputable penal practices shared by both Eastern and Western societies is reviewed to show that Western colonialist claims of moral superiority are unfounded. The adoption of Western court systems by Asian peoples, who had their own traditional local community mechanisms for controlling crime, was a mistake. Also, the acceptance by Asian countries of Western technical and material assistance for combatting adult and juvenile crime actually led to the creation of problems that the program of assistance was supposed to solve. The differing Western and Eastern approaches to crime have resulted in the failure of Western psychiatric treatment programs within Asian correctional systems. The importance of socially integrated communities that exert pressure on their members to conform is emphasized as essential for controlling crime. The need for community support of law enforcement advocated in Western societies is ascribed to the loss of integrated communities in Western countries. It is concluded that Asian societies must find ways of modernizing without sacrificing traditional community values in order to prevent the growth of crime and correctional institutions. Fourteen references are provided.
Index Term(s): Asia; Comparative analysis; Comparative criminology; Correctional reform; Corrections in foreign countries; Cultural influences
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