Utilitarian versus Retributivist Views - Essay Example

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Utilitarian versus Retributivist Views

The essence, focal points, main ideas and the merits of these two main theories are therefore to be discussed forthwith, in the ensuing discourse. Primarily, utilitarianism places focus on the consequences of the punishment, while retributivism is concerned with the retributive justice which is associated with the infliction of harm on the transgressor. Ideas Used In Utilitarian or Retributivist Theories Given that that utilitarianism is both a theory of punishment and ethics, it mainly takes on a consequentialist nature, because of its particular focus on the consequences of actions that have been executed by a particular group or an individual. Because of this, the moral theoretical standpoint of utilitarianism is that the balance of good and bad in a given action generates either good or bad. Under the principle of the greatest good for the greatest number, pain stems from the bad, while pleasure, from the good. Because of this, pain and pleasure are taken by utilitarians as the yardsticks for values in a utilitarian system. ...Show more


Utilitarian versus Retributivist Views Course/Number Date Introduction If there are principles that are sacrosanct to the dispensation of justice, law and order, then they are punishment and justification. While punishment is the deliberate and strategic meting out of suffering on an individual who has been found guilty of a criminal offence, justification refers to the declaration of an individual’s actions as reasonable or necessary in the court of law, and thereby extricating the individual of any legal liability…
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