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Crim C163 - Week 5 Notes

by: Edward Avakian

Crim C163 - Week 5 Notes Crm/Law C163

Edward Avakian
GPA 3.62

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About this Document

These notes cover what was discussed in lecture 10 (week 5)
Ethics and Politics of Justice
Geoff Ward
Class Notes
Crim, criminology, Law, Society, ethics, Politics, Justice, CrimC163, c163
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Edward Avakian on Wednesday April 27, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Crm/Law C163 at University of California - Irvine taught by Geoff Ward in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 12 views. For similar materials see Ethics and Politics of Justice in Criminology and Criminal Justice at University of California - Irvine.

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Date Created: 04/27/16
Crim C163 Lecture 10 Week 5 04/27/2016 ▯ <Power and Punishment: Three Seatings> ▯ ▯ Overview  Punishment or social control as social event  Punishment or social control as ethical dilemma  Punishment or social control as informal or formal  How does power relate to punishment ideas and practices? ▯ ▯ Sociologist Michele Foucault described modern punishment as a “technology of power,” which seeks to “discipline” (i.e., regulate) human societies and bodies  Example) The Prison Panopticon – Surveillance o Guard always watching = power over individuals ▯ ▯ Sociological theorists on punishment  Emile Durkheim – sees the function of punishment as promoting social solidarity through affirmation of values; argues that punishment’s important and power lies in expression of outrage upon commission of an offense o Punishment is the vehicle at which we express norms  Max Weber – observes that legal authority establishes a duty to obey laws, and leads to bureaucratization o Punishment is not just a social event, it’s an apparatus  Marxists – argue that institutions like law are shaped by parallel relations of power (i.e., capital) and organized to benefit the ruling (dominant) groups in society  What perspectives/concepts in ethics do these bring to mind? ▯ ▯ Law has a monopoly over legitimate coercion ▯ ▯ Punishment as ethical dilemma  “Although the law may provide for the infliction of punishment, society’s moral justification for punishment still has to be established” (Banks, Ch. 5).  On what bases can the morality of punishment be established? o Deontological o Utilitarian o Virtue o Care o Etc. ▯ ▯ Continuum of sanctions  Socially exclusionary sanctions (more extreme); sanctions which weaken or break social ties o Death o Disfranchisement o Incarceration o Solitary o Deportation  Socially inclusionary sanctions (less extreme); sanctions which maintain or strengthen social ties o Fines o Probation o Community service o Rehabilitation o Restorative ▯ ▯ 1) Deterrence  General deterrence: theory that knowledge of likely punishment (as social event), and social stigma associated with punishment, should generally deter people from participating in crime o Ex) camera (the social event)  Specific deterrence: theory that experience of punishment (as social event) should deter people from further participation in crime o EX) jail time or community service time  Utilitarian because the moral is to further good outcomes; to prevent reoffending and lessen the likelihood of victimization ▯ ▯ Does deterrence work?  Empirical evidence suggests that, generally, punishment has no individual deterrence effect (time-series studies, ecological studies, and perceptual studies)  Studies yield conflicting results but little substantial support for the general or specific theory of deterrence  Some point out that overuse of incarceration has diminished its deterrent effect. As criminal sanctions become viewed as normal, or to be expected, the stigma and aversion associated with them is weakened. The meaning of punishment as social event changes ▯ ▯ 2) Retribution  An eye for an eye and whole world would become blind ▯ ▯ Lex talionis, its appeal and limitations  Lex talionis: religiously-based principle of retribution calling for “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, and a life for a life”  Moral rationale for vengeance: some see retribution as a duty, and preferable to utilitarian punishment, for its greater clarity and certainty  Drawbacks o Many crimes where approach cannot be applied (i.e., sexual assault) o Considers only harm caused by the crime; no allowance for mitigating or aggravating circumstances associated with crime (i.e., mental health, or intention vs. negligence); o Logically carried out yields endless victimization (i.e., mass blindness) ▯ ▯ 3) Rehabilitation ▯ ▯ Some Pros and cons of rehabilitative ideal  Pros o Focus on human repair and social reintegration o Possible means of addressing other institutional failures (i.e., family, schools and labor market) by transmitting essential social skills/capital  Cons o Predictability, abuse, or arbitrariness. When is someone rehabilitated? How long can punishment under guide of “rehabilitation” be justified? o Limited evidence of effectiveness ▯ ▯ Just Desserts  Add on to the idea of retribution by adding the notion of “scale” and how you measure the dose of retribution punishment required ▯ ▯ Criticisms of “just desserts”  Desserts theory lacks any principle that determines a properly commensurate or “proportionate” sentence – what desert for inside trading vs home burglary, and why?  Ignores personal and social factors (mental health, poverty, discrimination) and presumes equal opportunity/culpability  Many actors involved in punishment (legislatures, juries, police, prosecutors, judges, prison authorities), all of whom cannot be controlled by formulas of “just dessert.” (i.e., guidelines falter – other agendas enter) ▯ ▯ Uber Justice?: Making “right” by other rules ▯ ▯ Justice by other rules  The frontier thesis – frontiers today? o Informal justice theories and road justice where absent legal authorities, populations engage in justice processes (i.e., vigilantes)  Online environments – any justice in chat rooms?  Uber? – other new organizations, your own? ▯ ▯ The frontier thesis and its critique  The frontier thesis explained o Demographic and economic growth outpaces legal and government institution building… o Frontiersmen and women forced to take law into own hands… o Vigilantism on the frontier (amid underdevelopment of legal institutions) is functional (i.e., has utility), paving way to rule of law  Critiques o Legitimates extra-legal mob acts o Presumes guilt of victims o Ignores race, class, and gender politics of social control (on frontier) o Not supported by evidence (i.e., examples of vigilantism amid formal legal institutions, such as lynchings involving police, in front of court) ▯ ▯ Ethics and politics of taxi driver justice  What is at stake here, or, who cares (and why)?  Research design: what did author do?  Key findings? o How is their justice system related to organizational culture? o What kinds of punishments, what purposes? o How are punishments determined?  Main limitations and insights? o What if other business models including Uber or Lyft were studied? o What does this tell us about organizing with others to punish? ▯ ▯ Seeing moral meaning in punishment moments  Moral awareness o The degree to which an individual recognizes that a situation contains moral contain (appreciating ethical dilemma)  Moral attentiveness o The extent to which an individual chronically perceives and considers morality in his/her actions (addressing ethical dilemma)  Moral clarity o Relative ambiguity/certainty regarding right and wrong  Is power over others (coercive power) related to “moral clarity” and thus punitiveness? If so, why (i.e., overconfidence in judgment?), and with what implications for organizations, and for society generally (i.e., fairness)? ▯ ▯


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