Corporal Punishments and Optimal Incapacitation
This article extends Steven Shavell's analysis of optimal incapacitation to corporal punishment. Using the assumption that some crimes may involve an undeterrable organ only, I argue that, for these crimes, imprisonment cannot be optimal because it would indiscriminately incapacitate other productive organs. I further establish that the death sentence and other cruel corporate punishments can be abolished for good if advanced temporary incapacitative sanctions are available. I conclude that a reform of criminal punishment need not revert to bloody corporal punishment, build more jails, or lock up criminals for longer periods of time using potential victims' money. Instead, a reform can use temporary incapacitative measures that can target particular organs at fault. Copyright 1996 by the University of Chicago.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ucp:jlstud:v:25:y:1996:i:1:p:121-30. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Journals Division)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.