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Palgrave Advances in Criminology and Criminal Justice in Asia
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The Culture of Capital Punishment in Japan

Authors: Johnson, David T

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  • Presents an accessible and concise study of Japanese capital punishment
  • Offers up to date, rigorous scholarship that explores key questions in a jurisdiction that little is known about 
  • Discusses: does the death penalty deter homicide? 
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eBook  
  • ISBN 978-3-030-32086-7
  • This book is an open access book, you can download it for free on link.springer.com
Hardcover £20.00
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-32085-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This open access book provides a comparative perspective on capital punishment in Japan and the United States. Alongside the US, Japan is one of only a few developed democracies in the world which retains capital punishment and continues to carry out executions on a regular basis. There are some similarities between the two systems of capital punishment but there are also many striking differences. These include differences in capital jurisprudence, execution method, the nature and extent of secrecy surrounding death penalty deliberations and executions, institutional capacities to prevent and discover wrongful convictions, orientations to lay participation and to victim participation, and orientations to “democracy” and governance. Johnson also explores several fundamental issues about the ultimate criminal penalty, such as the proper role of citizen preferences in governing a system of punishment and the relevance of the feelings of victims and survivors.

About the authors

David T. Johnson is Professor of Sociology at The University of Hawaii at Mānoa, US.

Reviews

 

“This superb book, by an eminent scholar of criminal justice, provides many original insights about capital punishment in Japan. I welcome its publication, and I hope it moves Japan closer to abolition by informing readers in the rest of the world about the problems that afflict the death penalty in my country, and about the impossibility of administering capital punishment in a manner that is fair, just, and accurate.” (Koichi Kikuta, Professor Emeritus, Meiji University, Japan)

“There is a saying in the board game of Go that “on-lookers see more than players.” In this insightful book, David Johnson analyzes Japanese capital punishment from a variety of external perspectives. He also identifies obstacles to abolition, and he illuminates a path forward as well.” (Sadato Goto, Attorney at Law, Osaka, Japan)

“David Johnson brings two rare capacities to this masterful essay – a deep and sympathetic knowledge of the law and culture of the Japanese criminal process, and an expert's understanding that civilizing state killing as a legal punishment is an impossibility in Japan or any other nation.” (Franklin E. Zimring, Simon Professor of Law, University of California at Berkeley, US)

“This brilliant book sheds light on many mysteries concerning Japan’s machinery of death. It is the most interesting and provocative work on the subject. By combining empirical and sociological analysis, it shows how Japan’s death penalty is peculiar in its own way, and it reveals troubling truths about Japanese criminal justice more generally.” (Kana Sasakura, Professor of Law, Konan University, Japan)

“Japan's death penalty is shrouded in secrecy because the Japanese government refuses to disclose many details about it. But this book describes many of the problems that plague Japanese capital punishment, including the reality of barbarous hangings. It should be read widely in the United States and around the world.” (Forum 90, an NGO promoting the ratification of the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)
  • Why Does Japan Retain Capital Punishment?

    Pages 1-18

    Johnson, David T.

  • Is Death Different? Two Ways Law Can Fail

    Pages 19-36

    Johnson, David T.

  • When the State Kills in Secret

    Pages 37-60

    Johnson, David T.

  • Wrongful Convictions and the Culture of Denial

    Pages 61-80

    Johnson, David T.

  • Capital Punishment and Lay Participation

    Pages 81-100

    Johnson, David T.

Buy this book

eBook  
  • ISBN 978-3-030-32086-7
  • This book is an open access book, you can download it for free on link.springer.com
Hardcover £20.00
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-32085-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Culture of Capital Punishment in Japan
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Advances in Criminology and Criminal Justice in Asia
Copyright
2020
Publisher
Palgrave Pivot
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-32086-7
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-32086-7
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-32085-0
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XV, 125
Number of Illustrations
3 b/w illustrations
Topics