Rationale and Efficacy of Detention as a Punitive Measure

B. Uma Devi

in Arrest, Detention, and Criminal Justice System

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780198075998
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199080953 | DOI:
Rationale and Efficacy of Detention as a Punitive Measure

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This chapter argues that the preconception that imprisonment, the punitive measure on which it hinges, is an effective and infallible measure which has stood the test of time is not supported in any way either by history, experience, or science. Neither is punitive detention so deeply rooted in the distant past as to shatter the criminal justice system if dispensed with nor was there any rationale attending its first adoption as the mode of punishment. The so-called justifications for detention as a punitive measure, namely, deterrence, reformation, and rehabilitation, were pious wishes tagged to it to justify it after the choice was made. Experience and science have proven the illogicality and irrationality of the justifications.

Keywords: imprisonment; punitive detention; prison; punishment; criminal justice system; deterrence; reformation; rehabilitation

Chapter.  4570 words. 

Subjects: Human Rights and Immigration

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