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Examining the Term Crime

What is Crime?

Most people think they know what crime is. But do they really master the concept in its most fundamental sense? Not necessarily, I would say.

When you hear the word crime, the picture of someone being assaulted by a thug [or by a ruthless criminal] usually comes to mind. You might also envision the premature death of someone or a theft of some sort. I would say that there is more to the term.

A number of definitions describe this phenomenon as a wrong. However, such a wrong must also be prohibited by a specific set of rules or laws. To that extent, what crime entails could be relative to the laws in effect in a particular social setting. To put it differently, there could be no crime without a law, which prohibits such a conduct. Hence, a conduct must become criminal and not the other way around.

The Philosophy of Crime

The question worth asking here is whether we could examine the term crime in context. Could we proffer a cogent theoretical perspective about the term itself? I would say yes.

What is it that we could discern from the term crime outside popular understandings? Is there a way to examine this concept outside the realm of a social setting? I would answer these questions in the affirmative. Here is why…

We could certainly explore the concept of crime from a philosophical lens. But bear in mind that by using the term philosophy, I am not suggesting that we could only approach the concept speculatively. Instead, what I am saying here is that we could try to make sense of why people commit crime from various angles. For example, we could examine the concept from a different intellectual paradigm or from other dimensions.

A Different Paradigm

We could examine the fundamentals of crime in society by exploring the conditions, which often makes it propitious for an individual to engage in such a conduct. In order to do that, however, we could only examine the concept from a theoretical perspective. I propose to do just that in these series of posts.

Here, I propose to examine the term crime from a different paradigm. Keep in mind that I will not project an academic approach to the concept. I will not reference scholarly works or other conventional instrumentation as a means to legitimize my arguments. This is to say, I will not echo governmental data or other forms of records in order to support my views.

With all that said, I will evoke popular understandings about the concept. I will do so in order to make my case as cogently as possible. I will mainly reflect on the concept of crime from a philosophical standpoint. If that proposition sounds intellectually intriguing, I encourage you to be on the lookout for my next posts on the subject.

Please visit this blog regularly to find out more.

Ben Wood Johnson, Ph.D.

Ben Wood Johnson, Ph.D.

President/CEO at BWEC, LLC.
Dr. Johnson is an author, educator, and philosopher. He is a multidisciplinary scholar. He writes about Philosophy, Legal Theory, Public/Foreign Policy, Education, Politics, Ethics, Race, and Crime. Dr. Johnson graduated from Penn State and Villanova University. He is fluent in French, Portuguese, Spanish, and Italian. Dr. Johnson enjoys reading, poetry, painting, and music.
Ben Wood Johnson, Ph.D.

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