In this essay I will be writing to ‘Evaluate the role of Enlightenment thought in the development of Classical Criminology’. I will do this by researching key theories and perspectives in the criminological field and seeing if there is a comprehensive relationship between criminological theory and political culture. I will be focusing on how the classical school grew out of the enlightenment.
The European enlightenment was the progressive move towards moving out of the religious belief when it came to who ruled the society and law in that time. The words enlighten and enlightened are used to signify something that comes from Enlightenment was seen as a positive movement as it was looking towards looking towards helping the individual within society. ‘Once uttered in tones of reverence, “the Enlightenment” is a phrase that now appears mostly in the contents of what is enlightenment’ (Fleischacker, S: 1). Instead of having life revolve around the idea that your life is pre-planned and has you have no free will the new idea with enlightenment is based on science instead of belief that everyone’s life is their own and they have the right to choose how they live it. This gives the people within society the chance to get involved with the political views that is happening as before the church decided everything that happened but with them no longer having influence, giving the chance for people to question the power religion had a hold of them for all that time.
The progression of enlightenment within progression of society, moulds into the idea of a social contract being put into place, although it isn’t written down it is what is expected from an i...
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...ham to start there research and have the massive influence towards the punishment of crime and the need to make it fair and establish the idea that there needs to be definitions of every crime and what needs to be done when they have been committed. This also goes into the fact that people are now seen to have their own sense of free will within life and also to commit crime which introduced the rational choice theory which is still used today, although it isn’t entirely the same this was the foundation behind this. This was in the twentieth century when rational choice assumptions close to the ones in the classical era was rediscovered. Focusing this time that the pleasure seeking, self interested rational humans make their own individual choices of their future by weighing up the possible consequences they may fact by the criminal justice sanctions should they fail.
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