Characteristics Of The Classical School Of Criminology

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In modern society, the process of prosecuting criminals takes a largely well-known pattern of Classicism. The classical school of thought in criminology is reaction against the arbitraries and tyranny, that had come associated with the administration of justice in the eighteenth century. Prior to classicism, justice was completely arbitrary and criminal punishment was barbaric and torturous. In the modern criminal justice system, it now conducts its process of justice following different principles that were set down for the administration of justice, by Enlightenment reformers of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. The characteristics of the modern criminal justice, such as due process of law and punishments proportionate to the crime, are precedents of early classical features of egalitarianism, the rejection of individualised punishment, the concept of proportionality, the social contract, utilitarianism, the concept of free will, certainty and swiftness of punishment, and the causes of crime. Although these classical features laid the foundations for much of the criminal justice system and concept of criminology in the modern day, the classical doctrine has been subjected to various criticisms.
Classicism is associated with the works of Cesare Beccaria (1738–1794), the father of the classical school of criminology and Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832) (Walklate, 2007). Brown, Esbensen and Geis (2012) highlights that, as classicists intended to reform the system

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