LAW AND PUNISHMENT: A CRITICAL SOCIOLOGY OF JURIDICAL INSTITUTIONS  Cover Image
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LAW AND PUNISHMENT: A CRITICAL SOCIOLOGY OF JURIDICAL INSTITUTIONS
LAW AND PUNISHMENT: A CRITICAL SOCIOLOGY OF JURIDICAL INSTITUTIONS

Author(s): Martin Kanoushev
Subject(s): Social Sciences
Published by: Centre for Advanced Study Sofia (CAS)
Keywords: punishment; revolutionary expedience; codification of social danger

Summary/Abstract: The Bulgarian Penal Act of 1896 does not have the notion of ‘danger’ related to either the deed or the doer. It has justly been described as a product of ‘the classical school in law’ and as subject to ‘the formal-dogmatic method’. Its Article 1 reads: ‘A crime or a perpetration is any deed that has been declared by the law as being such’. Although the creation of this Act took into account ‘the newest inquiries in criminal law and of those legislations that are deemed the realisation of the latest developments of science’, there is no concept of danger here. Here is the opinion of the Act’s authors on the death penalty: ‘the Commission, in taking into account the geographical location and the experience of our courts, as well as the diverse degrees of cultural development that can be found in our territory, found it necessary not to eliminate capital punishment. At the same time, however, it did restrict its negative aspects: it is provided solely for four types of offence that have extraordinary importance’. You can see it well: even the death penalty is related not to the social dangerousness of the deed but to crimes that have extraordinary importance. And criminals ‘by habit or by way of craft’ and repeated offenders, after serving one punishment, are not qualified as subjects dangerous to society.

  • Issue Year: 2011
  • Issue No: 4
  • Page Range: 1-43
  • Page Count: 43
  • Language: English