Pub. date: 2002 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412950664 | Print ISBN: 9780761922582 | Online ISBN: 9781412950664| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Henry F. Carey
Jewish criminal justice is derived ultimately from God's covenant, as articulated in the first five books of the Hebrew Bible. Jewish civil law developed to deter, halt, or compensate for much of the same illegal behavior that modern criminal law usually proscribes, though its remedies are often not as harsh. Thomas Cahill maintains, “For better or worse, the role of the West in humanity's history is singular. Because of this, the role of the Jews, the inventors of Western culture, is also singular … this race of wanderers who are the progenitors for the Western world” (1998: 3–4). According to Cahill, the integrated view of law and many of its procedures would not have emerged in the West and elsewhere without Jewish antecedents. By contrast, another Christian observer, Martin J. Buss, argues, “Should value [in Israelite law] appear only in its uniqueness, perhaps no value at all would appear in ...