Two Decades of Penal Populism – The Case of Hungary, Review of Central and East European Law,

Boda, Zsolt, Tóth, Mihály, Hollán, Miklós ORCID: and Bartha, Attila ORCID: (2022) Two Decades of Penal Populism – The Case of Hungary, Review of Central and East European Law,. Review of Central and East European Law, 47 (1). pp. 115-138. DOI 10.1163/15730352-bja10060

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Hungary Post-2010 has been ruled by Viktor Orbán and his right-wing Fidesz party and is generally regarded as a typical case of populist governance. Reforming the Penal Code was one of the first major policy changes initiated by Fidesz shortly after winning the 2010 elections. It introduced the ‘three-strikes’ principle into Hungarian penal policy which is considered a prime example of penal populism. It could be inferred that in the past decade Hungarian penal policy has been dominated by penal populism and punitive measures. This paper argues that reality is more nuanced and presents the concepts of penal populism and populist policy making, with a special focus on the Hungarian context. The article provides an overview of the most important penal policy measures in the past two decades and examines whether and how increased strictness of legislative acts influenced the sentencing practice. The paper highlights the related results of an empirical survey on public opinions about criminal law and ends with a case study exploration of the intersections of lowering the age limit of criminal responsibility and penal populism.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Hungary, penal populism, policy making, criminal legislation
Divisions:Faculty of Social Sciences > Institute for Political Science
Political science
ID Code:7280
Deposited By: MTMT SWORD
Deposited On:21 Mar 2022 10:23
Last Modified:21 Mar 2022 10:23

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