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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77791 Find in a Library
Title: Fresh Winds on Rotted Sails - Spanish Legal Reforms, American Parallels, and the Cuban Socialist Alternative - A Reply to Antonio Beristain
Journal: International Journal of the Sociology of Law  Volume:9  Issue:2  Dated:(May 1981)  Pages:177-200
Author(s): J P Brady
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 24
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This paper states that an alternative based on Cuban socialism could aid both the United States and Spain in improving their fights against crime and offer more viable solutions than those offered by Antonio Beristain in an article about Spain.
Abstract: The Cuban experience in juvenile and adult justice contrasts markedly to the bureaucratic professionalism signaling 'reform' in Spain and the United States. Cuba's process of institutionalization has confirmed and expanded the role of the ordinary citizen. Professionals in the Cuban legal system have cooperated effectively with representatives of the mass organizations who play central roles as judges, neighborhood leaders, and mediators of disputes. The paper states that Cubans consider crime to be the product of inequality and alienation and made quick work of eradicating organized crime, corruption, and serious street crime once the revolution was established. Moreover, the observation is made that Cuba could neither have reduced crime nor motivated its citizenry to devote their efforts to volunteer peacekeeping without first establishing a socialist economy and decentralizing power to the organized public. To effect a socialist transformation of justice and society, the social scientist must analyze the larger social system, promote class consciousness, and help guide popular action. Political education must be incorporated into popular organizations. Only the development of such independent working class bodies can counter the tendency of the capitalist state to co-opt dissent even as it continuously rebuilds its own political hegemony. Tables, notes, and about 70 references are provided. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Cause removal crime prevention; Community involvement; Cuba; Cultural influences; Law reform; Political influences; Radical criminology; Social change; Socialism; Spain; United States of America
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