Purpose and History

Essay by lewis2263University, Bachelor'sA-, November 2014

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Purpose and History

Justin Lewis


June 25, 2014

Mrs. Marshall





Purpose and History

In reference to the history of punishment for crimes, which date back as far as 450 B.C., some of the earliest methods of punishment are replaced by more efficient and humane methods of punishments or corrections. Punishments back then were harsher, brutal, and inhumane because people strongly believed in the retributive approach to crimes committed by individuals. Punishments such as whippings, brandings, torture, beatings, and mutilations were in efforts to make the punishment as relevant as possible to the crime committed also known as corporal punishment. Liars had their tongues ripped out; thieves had their finger or hand cut off; and adulterers had a scarlet "A" branded on their foreheads to reduce attractiveness and discourage any further adultery (Seiter, 2011). Punishments back then also included removing the individual from society or his kind by transportation or deportation, which resulted in decreasing the opportunity for the individual to repeat the crime committed.

Also placing individuals in pillories, wooden frames with holes that secured an individual's hands and head as he or she stand; and placing individuals in stocks, wooden frames with that secured an individual's head, hands, and feet while he or she sit, deterred both the individual and the broader community through pain and shame as he or she were visible to the public or community (Seiter, 2011).

In efforts to rid brutality and the extensive use of corporal and capital punishment, death by hanging or burning, for various minor crimes; some individuals were not satisfied with these methods in response to inappropriate behavior or criminal behavior, which led to a new code for criminal behavior and the establishment of prisons. The new code included changes,