Classical Criminology Essay

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Classical Criminology

The classical school of criminology was around in the eighteenth century. It came abount in a time when the previous dominent spiritual look at defining crime and criminal behaviour was being challenged by a newer naturalistic approach of the social contract theorists.

The classical school was the established ideas of monarchs, fedual lords and the fathers of the church. The main pioneers of the classical school were Cesar Beccaria ( 1738-1974) from Italy and Jeremy Bantham from Britain (1948-1832). From them writing their theories in the eighteenth century they established the essential components of the rational actor model. They both shared the idea that crime and …show more content…

They believed that each one of us is a potential criminal, and that crime provides a short cut way to getting what we need. Responsibility- the classical school believed that if we do something wrong or do something at the expence of someone we should be able to own up and take responsibilty for our own actions. Also they believed that punishment was a good way to show potential offenders what would happen to them if they behaved in a criminal way. They believed that anyone who breaks the law should be punished to pay the price. They thought that the crime and he punishment must be linked. They believed that the punishment should be in proportian to the crime in order for the offender to think about what he has done. for example, if someone is caught steeling 3000 pounds, then he should be made to pay back 4000 pound fine back. Or stay in prison for the same ammount of time that the person would have taken to earn the 3000 pounds. Cesear Beccaria believed that there should be a fixed punishment for crimes written into the law and not be changed. He believed that all people should be trated equally and the punishments should not be changed from person to person. His theory can be summerised into the following 13 propositions (taken from an 2nd edition introduction into criminogical theory by Roger Hopkins Burke). 1) In order to escape social chaos, each member of sociey must sacrifice

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