Introductory Observations: Objectives and Limitations

K. J. M. Smith

in Lawyers, Legislators and Theorists

Published in print October 1998 | ISBN: 9780198257233
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191681738 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Monographs on Criminal Law and Justice

Introductory Observations: Objectives and Limitations

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This chapter sets out the purpose of the book, which is to provide an analytical account of the intellectual and institutional forces promoting and driving core developments in English criminal jurisprudence from 1800 to 1957. These institutional forces are the judiciary, along with the legal profession; Parliament; and ad hoc governmental or other officially established bodies which have been charged with scrutiny of any part of the criminal law. The study identifies three periods of conceptual development: 1800–32, 1833–1907, and 1908–57. The first period, running into the early 1830s, is characterized by two dominating concerns: the form and accessibility of criminal law, and the capital punishment question. The beginning of the second period is naturally demarcated by the setting up of Brougham's Criminal Law Commissions and Macaulay's Draft Indian Penal Code, events of considerable theoretical significance.

Keywords: criminal jurisprudence; criminal law; English law; legal history

Chapter.  3052 words. 

Subjects: Criminal Law

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