Just Punishments: Federal Guidelines and Public Views Compared (Paperback)
  • Just Punishments: Federal Guidelines and Public Views Compared (Paperback)
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Just Punishments: Federal Guidelines and Public Views Compared (Paperback)

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£37.99
Paperback 243 Pages / Published: 31/12/1997
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The sentencing guidelines written by the U.S. Sentencing Commission for the federal crime courts were designed to lead to uniform the just punishments for convicted criminals. How well did the Commission's judgments about what were just punishments compare to the view of the American public? Using data from a 1994 national household survey, the authors compare the punishments described by the Commission to those desired by the public.Contrary to the frequency claims of excessive leniency on the part of judges that are often asserted by journalists and shapers of opinions, Rossi and Berk find strong correspondence between the median sentences deemed appropriate by the public and the sentences prescribed by the guidelines. Although the authors conclude that the Commission was able to match prescribed punishments closely to the American consensus for most crimes, in one category - drug trafficking offenses - the guidelines were much harsher in dealing with offenders.The national survey used a factorial survey as its design strategy, allowing for analysis of a large variety of federal crimes and variations in the social characteristics of convicted felons. A wealth of detail, along with ample graphic and tabular illustrations, extends the book's application to issues of consensus and variations in punitiveness by region and socioeconomic characteristics of respondents.

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Inc
ISBN: 9780202305738
Number of pages: 243
Weight: 318 g
Dimensions: 228 x 154 x 18 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

"During the 1990s, Americans have been alarmed by criminal activities. Two nationally recognized scholars have fashioned a complex methodology to answer the question: Does the punishment fit the crime? Their research... examin[es] the correspondence between federal sentencing guidelines and sentences preferred by the American public. Their discussion of this innovative measurement approach and analysis is technical and requires a fairly substantive knowledge of methodology on the part of the reader... Conclusions... offer profound messages about crime control to readers... Upper-division undergraduates and above."

--J. H. Larson, Choice

"Just Punishments describes research funded by the United States Sentencing Commision to answer a seemingly simple question: Are the federal sentencing guidelines consistent with how the American people want felons punished? To cut to the chase, the answer is largely yes... [T]his book makes a substantial contribution to the study of the sociology of law by providing evidence that the guidelines largely reflect public opinion, as well as showing where and how the guidelines deviate from public opinion. The book should appeal to wide range of readers, including public officials, criminal justice professionals, and academics in sociology and criminal justice. The clarity of the writing makes the book appropriate for both graduate and upper-division undergraduate classes in sociology and criminal justice."

--Randy R. Gainey, Contemporary Sociology

"Just Punishments reports the findings of a survey developed for the United States Sentencing Commission to compare public views on sentencing felons convicted in the federal courts with guidelines that were originally passed by Congress in 1987... Rossi and Berk's main finding is that the general pattern of sentencing suggested by the public is similar to what is found in the federal sentencing guidelines... In Just Punishments Rossi and Berk report their findings in a clear and readable style."

--Jerry Van Hoy, American Journal of Sociology


"During the 1990s, Americans have been alarmed by criminal activities. Two nationally recognized scholars have fashioned a complex methodology to answer the question: Does the punishment fit the crime? Their research... examin[es] the correspondence between federal sentencing guidelines and sentences preferred by the American public. Their discussion of this innovative measurement approach and analysis is technical and requires a fairly substantive knowledge of methodology on the part of the reader... Conclusions... offer profound messages about crime control to readers... Upper-division undergraduates and above."

--J. H. Larson, Choice

"Just Punishments describes research funded by the United States Sentencing Commision to answer a seemingly simple question: Are the federal sentencing guidelines consistent with how the American people want felons punished? To cut to the chase, the answer is largely yes... [T]his book makes a substantial contribution to the study of the sociology of law by providing evidence that the guidelines largely reflect public opinion, as well as showing where and how the guidelines deviate from public opinion. The book should appeal to wide range of readers, including public officials, criminal justice professionals, and academics in sociology and criminal justice. The clarity of the writing makes the book appropriate for both graduate and upper-division undergraduate classes in sociology and criminal justice."

--Randy R. Gainey, Contemporary Sociology

"Just Punishments reports the findings of a survey developed for the United States Sentencing Commission to compare public views on sentencing felons convicted in the federal courts with guidelines that were originally passed by Congress in 1987... Rossi and Berk's main finding is that the general pattern of sentencing suggested by the public is similar to what is found in the federal sentencing guidelines... In Just Punishments Rossi and Berk report their findings in a clear and readable style."

--Jerry Van Hoy, American Journal of Sociology


-During the 1990s, Americans have been alarmed by criminal activities. Two nationally recognized scholars have fashioned a complex methodology to answer the question: Does the punishment fit the crime? Their research... examin[es] the correspondence between federal sentencing guidelines and sentences preferred by the American public. Their discussion of this innovative measurement approach and analysis is technical and requires a fairly substantive knowledge of methodology on the part of the reader... Conclusions... offer profound messages about crime control to readers... Upper-division undergraduates and above.-

--J. H. Larson, Choice

-Just Punishments describes research funded by the United States Sentencing Commision to answer a seemingly simple question: Are the federal sentencing guidelines consistent with how the American people want felons punished? To cut to the chase, the answer is largely yes... [T]his book makes a substantial contribution to the study of the sociology of law by providing evidence that the guidelines largely reflect public opinion, as well as showing where and how the guidelines deviate from public opinion. The book should appeal to wide range of readers, including public officials, criminal justice professionals, and academics in sociology and criminal justice. The clarity of the writing makes the book appropriate for both graduate and upper-division undergraduate classes in sociology and criminal justice.-

--Randy R. Gainey, Contemporary Sociology

-Just Punishments reports the findings of a survey developed for the United States Sentencing Commission to compare public views on sentencing felons convicted in the federal courts with guidelines that were originally passed by Congress in 1987... Rossi and Berk's main finding is that the general pattern of sentencing suggested by the public is similar to what is found in the federal sentencing guidelines... In Just Punishments Rossi and Berk report their findings in a clear and readable style.-

--Jerry Van Hoy, American Journal of Sociology

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