Punishment is the common response to crime and deviance in all societies. However, its particular form and purpose are also linked to specific features of the structure of these societies at a particular time and place. Through a comparative historical analysis of punishment, this book is designed to identify and examine the sources of similarity and differences in types of economic punishments, incapacitation devices and structures, and lethal and non-lethal forms of corporal punishment over time and place. We will look closely at punishment responses to crime and deviance across different regions of the world and in specific countries like the United States, China, and Saudi Arabia. It is hoped that the reader will gain an appreciation for both the universal and context-specific nature of punishment and its use for purposes of social control, social change, and the elimination of threat to the prevailing authorities.

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