Criminal disenfranchisement: a debate on punishment citizenship and democracy

Marshall, Pablo (2015) Criminal disenfranchisement: a debate on punishment citizenship and democracy. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Many convicted offenders around the world do not vote in elections because they have been disenfranchised, which is the legal deprivation of their voting rights as a consequence of their convictions. Addressing this practice from the perspective of legal and constitutional theory, this dissertation deals with the question of how modern democracies should understand the connection between the right to vote and the commission of a criminal offence. After careful analysis of issues related to the democratic importance of the right to vote, the civic virtue of offenders and the requirements of a democratic punishment, the dissertation argues that disenfranchisement is a practice that constitutes an unjustified exception to the general principle of universal suffrage. However, it may also critically express and shape some of our general ideas about democracy and citizenship. In particular, it is argued that the exclusionary and degrading aspects of disenfranchisement can illuminate inclusionary aspects associated to the right to vote. In making this argument, it is suggested that the right to vote not only works as a right of participation but also embodies a mechanism of democratic recognition. Addressing the current common law jurisprudential trends on disenfranchisement, it formulates a case for a strong judicial review of legislation in cases in which voting eligibility is at stake.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: criminal disenfranchisement, citizenship, democracy
Subjects: J Political Science > JC Political theory
K Law > K Law (General)
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Law
Supervisor's Name: Christodoulidis, Professor Emilios and Adam, Professor Tomkins
Date of Award: 2015
Depositing User: P Marshall
Unique ID: glathesis:2015-5968
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 11 Feb 2015 16:59
Last Modified: 28 Nov 2018 15:08

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