Conflict As Property By Nils Christie Essay examples

812 Words Oct 15th, 2016 4 Pages
Conflicts as property is an initially perplexing notion. Published in a 1977 issue of The British Journal of Criminology, “Conflicts as Property” is an article criticising industrialised legal criminal systems and proposing a new, reformed system. Nils Christie suggests that conflicts are entities that are taken from their rightful owners. He later describes a hypothetical legal system where “professional thievery” of conflicts is nonexistent. By use of an analogy and several sub-ideas he deconstructs the concept.
Christie begins his modern law investigation with a Tanzanian case. In this fabricated court case, the main parties are significant and at the centre of attention. Moreover, the general public’s opinion is vital and judges are inactive for they are not experts in village matters. What Christie describes parallels a traditional legal system in which courts are not formally organised and citizens are heavily involved. Although this court is completely negated in modern western law, Christie uses it as a means bringing to light particular errors in modern legal systems. Namely, industrialised courts are geographically inaccessible and entirely exclusive institutions. Additionally, in extreme cases dealt with by the Supreme Court, “the directly involved parties do not even attend their own court cases.” Christie extends these points to suggest that in criminal proceedings, victims are in completely non-beneficial situations as a crime was committed against them and…

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