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The Victorian Publics’ Outlook On Crime And Punish Essay

  • Submitted by: LostInUS
  • on September 28, 2011
  • Category: History
  • Length: 841 words

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Below is an essay on "The Victorian Publics’ Outlook On Crime And Punish" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Locking doors, cautious eyes, and dreadful hallucinations of footsteps throughout the night, fearful dreams, and murderous thoughts clung to the minds of Victorians. No mercy, sympathy, forgiveness, compassion, or charity was the instant effect towards criminals. Although the press generated much of their ideas and panic towards crime and punishment, Victorian’s still held very strong opinions. The harsh punishment following crime in the Victorian era reflects the firm, and sometimes, unforgiving beliefs of people during that time.
Throughout the Victorian era the media played a big role on the public’s thoughts on crime and punishment. People weren’t aware how rare the huge criminal cases were. “It was always the more sensational stories that make the headlines and generate public fears, even panics.” (Emsley 321) Many people encouraged severe punishment because of their narrow views of criminals being serial killers. Dr. Thomas Neil Cream, who had murdered seven women, was the ideal example. “He was the kind of criminal who, by his actions, appeared both mad and evil; the kind of criminal that the general public want criminals to be – especially once they have been caught and executed.” (Emsley 1) This fear invited unforgiving attitudes towards crime. What Victorian’s didn’t know about murders was that only one per 100,000 people was murdered in the late 1800s. The threat was extremely unlikely. “Much of the panic appears to be generated by the press, notably the influential Times, which was seeking tougher punishment for offenders.” (Emsley 2) The press practically brainwashed people into promoting harder punishments for offenders. The media was the greatest influence on people in the Victorian era. It put fear, insecurity, and unforgiving feelings in the minds of many Victorians, which helped to lead to the unreasonable punishments for small crimes.
The press furthered their hopes for tougher consequences for offenders by publishing individuals’ crimes for...

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