Impact Of Classical Theory On The Criminal Justice System

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Assessment of the Positive Impact of Classical Theory on the Legal System Through Promotion of Fairness and Improvement to the Existing Criminal Justice System

Classical theory traces its origin to the mid years of the eighteenth century. Importantly, during this time, the uses of very severe and intense modes of punishment were common. This school of thought has its roots in Europe, as the region is well known to have used severe torture procedures to obtain confessions and secure testimonies that were self-incriminating. Highlighting the fundamental idea that classical theory is based on: that humans should be left to exercise their free will in making decisions and the modes of punishment used can deter crime given that their extent is proportional, implemented in a proper manner and fitting to the particular
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The two classical writers were focusing on the reform of the legal and penal procedures rather than explaining criminal behavior. In the process, the two came up with a theory that has huge relevance in today’s criminology. The drive of the classical writers was to change the prevailing law systems, penalties and courts in European countries since they were marred by whimsical and biased decisions. The common feature was use of torturous procedures to get confessions and cruel punishments such as mutilation, inappropriate whipping and public hanging (Jeffery, 1959). They aimed to establish a better and fairer system in the legal and judicial sector. The push for the reforms converged with the interests of the lead intellectuals and middle class of merchants in the European countries. The political movements that were coming up during the classical periods also aided in pushing for the reforms as they wanted an increase in democracy and citizens’ participation (Jeffery,

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