This paper analyzes the premises of the two main theories of punishment that influence sentencing policies in most Western countries-retributivism and utilitarianism-and compares them to the basic values that structure the restorative justice theory. It then makes clear distinctions between restorative justice and the rehabilitative ideal and addresses the criticism that, like rehabilitation, restorative justice results in different punishments to equally culpable offenders. The paper concludes that restorative justice does not contradict retribution and utility as theoretical justifications for penal sanctioning. Moreover, it suggests that restorative practices rehabilitate the basic notions of retribution and deterrence that have been neglected in modern sentencing schemes, that restorativism contributes new and deeper meaning to those notions and values, and that in doing
Zvi D. Gabbay,
Justifying Restorative Justice: A Theoretical Justification for the Use of Restorative Justice Practices,
2005 J. Disp. Resol.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.missouri.edu/jdr/vol2005/iss2/4