Classical and Positivist Schools
Compare and Contrast Classical and Positivist Schools
Cesare Beccaria was an Italian nobleman that firmly believed in the Classical School of Thought. Mr. Beccaria believed people naturally believed that people’s behavior is motivated by getting pleasure and avoiding pain. He believed that crimes occur when pleasure and rewards from illegal acts outweigh the pains of punishment. The Classical School of thought focuses on the offense committed instead of the person that does the crimes. The punishment has to fit the crime and for the punishment to be effective it must be swift, certain, and severe.
The Classical School of thought has several elements:
1. People have free will to choose criminal or lawful solutions to meet or handle their problems
2. Crime looks attractive when it promises great benefits with little effort
3. Crime maybe controlled by fear of punishment
4. Punishment that is severe, certain, and swift will stop crime
They believed in fast punishment instead of long trials. One of the major parts of criminal punishment reform was for fair and equal treatment of accused offenders. Judges could punish criminals however they wanted to no matter how severe the crime. Mr. Beccaria and other members of the Classical School fought for punishment to be set by legislative instead of judges having all of the authority for punishment. The members of the Classical School of Thought believed that preventing crime was more important than punishing the criminal. When criminals know what the punishment is going to be for the crimes that they are going to commit it will help to deter the crimes from being committed. When people do commit crimes the crime is done of their own free will. This procedure of knowing the punishment with it being severe to the crime helped to keep criminals from reoffending. Although the Classical School of Thought believed...