DURKHEIM’S THEORY OF PUNISHMENT (The Social Solidarity theory)

May 19th, 2015
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Durkheim believes Punishment is more of a moral process than a legal one. A society has certain shared morality and values, which when breached, attract punishment. The moral base on which a society is based doesn’t usually allow rooms for changes.

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DURKHEIMS THEORY OF PUNISHMENT (The Social Solidarity theory)Introduction-Durkheim believes Punishment is more of a moral process than a legal one. A society has certain shared morality and values, which when breached, attract punishment. The moral base on which a society is based doesnt usually allow rooms for changes. A crime (a change) when committed, threatens to challenge the shared morality of the society. Example- Shared morality of a society says that no person shall be deprived of his right to life. Person X commits a murder and threatens the shared morality. He is considered deserving for a punishment.Working of the theoryDurkheim believes that the criminal law of the society is nothing but an embodiment of the shared morality and normative values of the society. Let us call these values and morals Collective Conscience.Crimes that violate this Collective Conscience provoke the moral outrage and a passionate social desire for vengeance. These passions find expressions in the legal system of the society, which although become institutionalized and legislated in the form of laws, deep down they remain a tool for channeling collective moral sentiment of the society. The advantages of such a system (where peoples emotional outbursts are recognized in the legal framework), Durkheim argues, are two-A much wider population feels itself to be involved in the process of punishment.Despite the process being rational and institutionalized, it s

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