Multiculturalism: A Challenge for Modern Criminal Law (El multiculturalismo: Un Desafío Para el Derecho Penal moderno)
28 Pages Posted: 18 May 2010
Increasing immigration flows led to the formation of cultural heterogeneous societies and consequently, to the rising concept of multicultural states. Precisely, so-called multiculturalism has created new challenges to criminal law because a determined behaviour will change in accordance to the cultural context of its author. In order to determine the scope of multiculturalism and how Criminal law should confront it, it is indispensable to examine the theories that try to resolve the specific problems of cultural diversity, the so-called liberal and comunitaristic theories. This will in turn provide understanding of what are culturally motivated crimes and if the answer, for penal treatment purposes, must be found either within the sphere of unlawfulness or of culpability. Considering the multicultural character of the American society it is not possible to respond to such a question without having understanding "cultural defences" arising from both literature and jurisprudence.
Keywords: Multiculturalism, defences, culpability, error, liberalism, comunitarism
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