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Goodbye to Hammurabi: Analyzing the Atavistic Appeal of Restorative Justice

Delgado, Richard
June 4, 2015

Source: (2000) Stanford law Review. 52(4): 751.

The relationships among race, crime, and community are complex, and they take on many forms. While every crime involves the violation of community, the community dimension of crime takes on special significance under some conditions. Such conditions may include situations when race, age, class, or gender may be a factor in the commission of crime or in the enforcement or non-enforcement of crime. In this paper Richard Delgado examines the restorative justice movement, especially in its emphasis on addressing the effects of crime on community. Delgado remarks that restorative justice offers a new paradigm for structuring the relationships among crime, offenders, and communities; and for conceptualizing and responding to crime. Thus restorative justice constitutes a radically new approach to criminal justice. With all of this in mind, Delgado reviews the origins and ideology of restorative justice; critiques the movement; identifies some of the deficiencies of our current criminal justice system; and offers suggestions for strengthening community bonds while dealing fairly and consistently with those who breach those bonds.


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