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Video: At The Pillar Of Pillory: Public Punishment In The Modern World - Society
It would seem that public executions and flogging remained in the distant past or, in any case, are not used in the civilized world. Unfortunately, this is not entirely true. “Now go in a dirty T-shirt, let everyone see what a slob you are!”, “I bring to the attention of the meeting that Ivanov loses his quarterly bonus for failing to meet the deadline for the project”, “Dear residents! Check out the list of debtors”and so on and so forth. Why are public punishments used and are they effective?
What the executor is seeking
To commit an act of just retribution
“I want to correct the behavior of the culprit,” the leader (parent, teacher) says to himself. "When requests, persuasions and explanations do not work, you have to punish." However, if he is honest with himself and tries to take the place of a subordinate, it turns out that public criticism is a bad educator. Censures, reprimands, collective ridicule are unlikely to cause the “convict” to desire to obey, study or work “perfectly”.
Show power, raise your authority, throw out aggression
Does the child disobey? Does the employee ignore orders and rules? Is the student indifferent to the lessons? It can be difficult for a leader to admit his share of fault in what is happening. It is much easier to accuse a subordinate and punish him approximately, and to do this with all honest people. So the effect will be amplified by shame and humiliation. If you want to suppress the will of a child, to be branded as a cruel teacher or weak leader, the method of influence is chosen correctly! In fact, here we are talking about a banal revenge for their own weak educational or organizational skills.
Prevent unwanted behavior from others
"One must be punished so that the rest will start working with tripled strength." Since ancient times, public executions and flogging were considered acts of intimidation. The authorities sought to drive more people to a brutal performance - it was assumed that a terrible spectacle should discourage crime. But in fact, everything turned out exactly the opposite, and in most civilized countries this practice was abandoned.
Flogging is widespread in Singapore and is applied to both locals and tourists. So, in 1994, a nineteen-year-old American was subjected to flogging, accused of vandalism. Even the personal intervention of then-president of the United States, Bill Clinton, did not help him to avoid corporal punishment.
Exemplary punishment is a risky undertaking. There is a line here, crossing which you can provoke a conflict. If, in connection with the misconduct of one, the entire team (it does not matter if it is a staff member or a group of a kindergarten) is deprived of something good (bonuses, excursions, a bag of gingerbread), then, publicly pointing out the only culprit, the leader gives a reason for bullying or boycott. It is unlikely that the "cold war", grievances and strife are what the leader wanted to achieve.
What does the convict feel
If a person realizes the incorrectness of his behavior, understands the justice of the punishment, he repents. Of course, a sore wound will form in his soul, which will take time to heal. There is a danger here that guilt can transform into shame. While these two feelings are often intertwined, you need to differentiate between them.
Guilt is always local: I'm not all bad, but only in this. It is experienced as oppression, “badness,” but there is a specific reason for this feeling. "I am guilty because I did the wrong thing, caused harm to someone, etc." Shame is a total feeling. "I myself am bad, insignificant." This feeling is much more toxic than wine, it is harder to experience. Usually it is accompanied by a desire to decrease, disappear. “I wanted to fall through the ground” - this is the feeling that can be caused in a situation of public punishment. Serious trauma is too high a price to pay for correcting behavior and correcting mistakes.
Two women in Bedford, Pennsylvania, stole a gift card from a nine-year-old girl when she was shopping for a toy in a supermarket. The Bedford County District Attorney insisted that the thieves, instead of imprisonment for four and a half hours, stand with a poster "I robbed a nine-year-old girl on her birthday!"
Anger, resentment, protest
If a person does not realize his guilt, he feels like a victim of an unfair sentence. Even if the act itself is recognized as erroneous, the publicity of the punishment will be perceived as excessive execution. "Perhaps I messed up, but why did you have to scold me in front of everyone?" In such situations, there can be no talk of any corrections and remorse. Indignation, blaming others or force majeure circumstances, tantrums and conflicts - these are the results of the “stigma”.
How viewers feel
If the offense is perceived by the public as harmful, and the perpetrator himself as a dangerous or bad person, such inhumane feelings as malice, schadenfreude and contempt arise. By the way, one of the reasons for the abolition of public executions was that the audience was accustomed to cruelty, while they had to unlearn it. Each ordinary witness seems to become a prosecutor or an executioner, rising above the humiliated and insulted. Agree, all this is not very ethical. And there is no need to talk about the educational effect for the team.
Compassion for the culprit, indignation at arbitrariness
If the guilt is insignificant and the punishment is excessive, the collective protest mood arises. The very same offense can be perceived as heroic opposition to the tyrant-leader. Another reason for the abolition of public executions was precisely the fact that instead of hatred for the criminal, they evoked admiration and sympathy. For the public, such kind, bright feelings are, of course, useful, but for the initiator of the execution, such a reaction will be an unpleasant surprise. He will lose his authority as a just leader, and it was to him that he was so eager.