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Punitive And Restorative Justice

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There are many reasons and answers on the punishment for crime as it have changed over the past 20 years more than restorative. The attitudes to crime and deviance have influenced this change. The easiest way to explain this is that back it was common in the ancient times up to until a couple decades ago, offenders would have their hands cut off for stealing or body parts would have been removed as a way of punishment unlike modern times. For example, there would be physical punishments which today’s modern times, people would call it cruelty. These sentences of punishments were more common in the past rather than today’s modern times. Offenders would have been punished with whippings or putting them in stocks which kept a person’s head and hands immobilized for a long period of time as well as public humiliation. Punishments was almost like living in hell to the point is risked people’s lives in so many levels as many would die from capital punishment.

In the modern world, offenders are punished without physical torture unlike the ancient times up until a few decades ago by either imprisoning people for a set period of time depending on the level crime they have committed, or by execution if the crime is serious enough. Another key difference worthy of mentioning is that in today’s modern times, there are very strict guidelines for which punishments fit which crimes. For example, certain crimes can carry punishments of ‘no less than’ a certain amount of days or years in prison and ‘no more than’ a certain amount of time. In older times, it was often up to whomever was in charge of handing out punishment to decide and dictate what would happen to the offenders. Judges were allowed to say, for example, ‘Cut off his fingers for stealing’ or ‘let him go’ and it was up to their judgement.

The purpose of punitive justice is to punish criminal offenders for their inappropriate conduct. As a result, there are consequences for all actions and most are not as pleasant because it takes away a person’s freedom. Criminal offenders are taken to jail to revaluate themselves and their wrong doings. This then allows them to develop and to ponder on the things they have committed. When a person is in jail, they are surrounded with other prisoners. The good thing about punning individuals is that it protects society and it helps maintaining social norms and values that have been created in order for society to function and so by removing offenders, it will only assist society collectively. Another strength is that normalised violence and aggression is a means of problem solving as it screams for attention. This is also a strength as it brings awareness on what needs to be taken into consideration by the ruling class.

Punishment must be dealt with immediately because delayed punishment will only give the chance and opportunity for the offender to find something to else defend themselves with. Stern 1989 stated that offenders are often depressed and suffer with deprivation. This is because offender’s freedom has been taken away from them and as a result, they suffer with psychological and emotional issues and so in prison, they allow TV’s as it helps ease their depression. A limitation on individual who are in prison is that they have extream emotional and psychological problems. In addition to this, privileges of prisons are different from each prison. Another strength is that in the UK if a prisoner follows the rules whilst being in jail, they can earn privileges such as seeing their families and friends and spending money every week. They have rights such as being protected from bullies and harm.

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Restorative is an alternative way to punishment to manage behaviour which benefits and reconstruct society. It is a system of criminal justice which focuses on the rehabilitation of offenders through reconciliation with victims and the community at large. Instead of people going to jail, they are doing alternative things and they are being monitored in every move that they take. This means that there are alternatives to jail itself. This was not the case a decade and in the ancient times. This is beneficial because although the individual may not like to serve and help communities for better causes, it will make them think and ponder on their actions and so restorative justice is very beneficial. This is known as restorative punishment because it positively progresses both to the offender and society. Gref (2001) argued that rather being separated from society and shielded from the aftermath of their criminal acts, criminals needed to be exposed to the cost of their crimes in a meaningful way that helps them reintegrate into mainstream social relationships. An example of what restorative justice looks like is that if an individual is dealing with drugs, you will not be sent to jail for having addictions. Instead you will go into a course with a therapy to help them stop their drug uses by giving them medications to prevent from doing drugs again. Those people will be on course and they’ll come back to improve on themselves and so it is restorative justice. This tells us that restorative justice has great advantages to society as its aim is to bring awareness and clarity to their previous behaviours.

Most studies suggested that social factors that influenced the attitudes to crime was caused due to social and economic environments. Sociologists believe that family places a deep effect in the life of a person. Not only their needs but it transfers cultural values which socialize and train them in survival patterns. However, family situations vary from person to person as all individuals may not be able to live in normal functional family. Lowell Carr stated that there are six characteristics of a normal functional family, Structural completeness, Economic security, Cultural conformity, Moral conformity, Physical and psychological normality and Functional adequacy. Yet, it is impossible to find a nuclear family home with all these characteristics, but then it does not mean that there are no ‘normal’ homes in society. What’s fundamental here is the level of the presence of these characteristics in an individual’s life for their overall survival and growth.

Many working class people commit Freud or criminal activities as a result of the exploitation from the upper class individuals to express their feelings towards them and again getting the attention of the upper class is needed in order for society to grow and function and so addressing issues that are happening in beneficial as it brings new laws and policies into force in order to protect people’s rights and in exchange it also protects the created norms and values. Another factor of victimisation in the UK is the location a person may live such as poorer areas with a lot of working-class people. Age is another factor as the younger people aged in their teens and early 20s are most likely to be victimised. Another factor is gender because most people that are affected to victim proneness are women and poor people because it is said that this is not an ideal world and society is more structural and so men (pritriarchy) and poorer people are most likely to me powerless most likely to be victimised.

Victimisation is socially constructed by the news. The media is good at sending wrong messages with emotive language to make the population believe in what they are saying, and the decisions are with us as to if we are buying in to it. Most of the issues that are happening in social media are hidden and so the media only projects what they want you to believe. This shows that the media is run by upper class individuals (bourgeoisie) and they are exploiting information that needs to be addresses and because the have the power to control, this is socially constructed. There is also a hidden agenda in that specific field.

In addition to this, fear of crime is a direct product of the misinformation provided in the media which makes many groups feeling at risk of being victimised. The higher the crime rate they have given the wrong information given to the population. The people that are in jail are automatically labelled as thugs. So the media is not only fuelling society with junk and misinterpretation. As a result, society has become more unfriendly and more people are worried of people made to feel worried.

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Punitive And Restorative Justice. (2021, September 11). Edubirdie. Retrieved March 21, 2023, from
“Punitive And Restorative Justice.” Edubirdie, 11 Sept. 2021,
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Punitive And Restorative Justice [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2021 Sept 11 [cited 2023 Mar 21]. Available from:
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