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Although the recent debate over the efficacy of

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Senior Manager
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Although the recent debate over the efficacy of [#permalink] New post 29 Aug 2008, 07:43
Although the recent debate over the
efficacy of capital punishment as a
deterrent to violent crime has produced
informed commentary from both camps,
few of the “experts” cited in public
discussion of the issue are aware that
the basic concept of deterrence was
developed during the eighteenth century
by the Italian writer Cesare Beccaria in
his book Crimes and Punishments
(1764). While arguing vehemently in
favor of strict punishments for violent
criminals, Beccaria nevertheless
rejected torture, secret trials, and capital
punishment as viable deterrents to
violent crime.

Beccaria’s writings have had a
profound influence on the treatment of
criminals. However, at present there is
little evidence to support Beccaria’s
fundamental contention that strict
punishment leads to a reduction in
violent crime. In a survey of the
American penal system recently carried
out by the Justice Department, a vast
majority of convicted felons revealed
that the threat of strict punishment, even
capital punishment, in no way deterred
them from committing a particular crime
or pursuing a career in crime. One
wonders how Beccaria would alter his
arguments if evidence like this had been
available to him. He might be pleased to
note that the evidence does support his
belief that capital punishment is an
ineffective deterrent, but he would be
hard pressed to find compelling support
for his other Draconian
recommendations.

1. The passage is primarily concerned with


a. promoting the theories of a little-known author

b. urging the reader to address a pressing social concern

c. presenting an alternative to a widely-held belief

d. discussing the strengths and weaknesses of a theory

e. tracing the history of a particular social movement




2. Which of the following describes the author’s attitude toward the debate over capital punishment?




a. Neither side has produced any cogent argument in favor of its position.

b. It is a passionate dispute that has produced more rhetoric than substance.

c. One side has a stronger position based on theories first expressed in the eighteenth century.

d. Any resolution of the debate will require drastic reconsideration of current penal codes.

e. Both sides have contributed thoughtful arguments to the debate.


3. According to the author, which of the following is true of Beccaria’s conception of criminal punishment?



a. It is discounted by most participants in the debate over capital punishment.

b. It typifies eighteenth-century attitudes toward the treatment of violent criminals.

c. It is less relevant to the debate over capital punishment than it was two centuries ago.

d. It forms the basis of the most contemporary discussions of crime and punishment.

e. It contains an early expression of a central issue to the debate over capital punishment.
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Re: RC: capital punishment [#permalink] New post 29 Aug 2008, 10:19
A,C,C.
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Re: RC: capital punishment [#permalink] New post 29 Aug 2008, 10:52
A, C, and E?

This one is tough... I am not sure of any of the three answers; especially the first question.

What is the source?
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Re: RC: capital punishment [#permalink] New post 01 Sep 2008, 16:21
OA = d,e,e

source - Free CAT from Princeton review.
Re: RC: capital punishment   [#permalink] 01 Sep 2008, 16:21
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