Nandrea, Lorri “Having No Hand in the Matter,” in Ackley, Katherine Ann. Essays in contemporary culture, Mason OH: Cengage Learning, 2004. Print
Justice emerged through evolution and advancement of the human civilization to solve the social standoff characterized by the archaic tooth for a tooth tradition of dispute settlement and gender discrimination only served the powerful. Greek philosophy and civilization expound clearly through mythical indulgence, the areas where the society was most affected by injustice and the most affected members of the society. Dispute settlement was replaced by the better version of resolution through a thorough interrogation of the circumstances surrounding each case. This huge departure from the former version eliminated vengeance in reasonable and civilized dispute clearance, ushering the era of justice. Responsibility of wrongdoing could not unnecessarily be apportioned under the new approach. Confusion and resistance of the new approach had a number of ways to be solved, including negotiating with hardliners of the conservative school of thought of the eye for an eye version of dispute settlement. Agamemnon’s family surrounds the themes describing both the earlier and newer version of the civilization under justice development as featured in the works of many scholars specialized in gender studies. This discourse highlights Nandrea’s main points of justice through the evolution of the modern system as highlighted by Aeschylus touching on ancient Greek civilization in his trilogy of related plays.
As mentioned in the introduction of Nandrea’s essay (25), there is a theme of little surprise that women are presented in essay to be among the greatest victims the archaic justice systems. Perhaps, the author captures this theme well since she is a woman and her motivation as mentioned in the essay also arises from a renowned French dramatist who also pairs as a feminist. The feelings of the two personalities make important input in the development of the idea that gender imbalance characterized archaic justice systems which were ironically founded on injustice. It is perhaps worth to notice that the role of justice is not only to protect the marginalized groups of the society as demonstrated in the play by Aeschylus but also acts a tool for cohesion in the family as well as in the entire community (26).
Ironically, the retraction and forced withdrawal of women in the justice archaic system is represented as the cause of the perishing of the mighty guardians of the same system, as Agamemnon was killed by his wife in vengeance of death of her daughter (27). While violence is not permitted at any cost in any clearly defined and established justice system, it is important to note one important aspect represented by arbitration in an efficient justice system. The author accounts for the treatment of the Furies as created by Aeschylus in a lenient approach to drive conscience and reasoning in their understanding of justice.
Athena emerges to be the savior of the unjust society running on each other in an unending cycle of vengeance for the injustices committed. Strikingly, the goddess figure emerges as an important intervention in the ensuing commotion. Justice emerges later in the court process which the author identifies with an adjudication mechanism that the society can use to balance the equation of vengeance that seems to get out of hand without such a system. Criminal responsibility and other guilt attributes are allocated on grounds of a keen follow up of the circumstances and participation of individuals in crime. By painting the justice system based on factual follow up for crimes, it is clear that nothing can be ignored when the author states that “…though you walked away from the crime, we can still see the trace of your deed” (Nandrea, 30). Justice system appears to be a tight platform where punishment and deterrence are represented by law principles that guide the society.
Justice follows evidence that is like a double edged sword; it serves in the same gusto in incrimination as it does in exoneration. Reliance on sufficient proof is a prominent tenet in the evolution of justice as it is in the modern day. Without follow up on evidence, it would be difficult to identify the guilty and dismiss the innocent in case there are uncertainties in the circumstances of a presenting challenge that involves criminal responsibility. The author represents this idea in an accurate imagery of the verso where the individual and his signature and identity are regarded to be similar before the law. The hand that acts in crime belong to the criminal can be followed up to reveal the actual criminal in the system which heavily relies on evidence as highlighted (29).
Through disruptions of the system such as by tampering with the connection that the criminal had with a particular crime, the evidence is lost and it becomes difficult to deliver justice. The author uses the tag anonymity to highlight the loophole of the system based on justice since the link is lost between the act and the doer (31). Despite the sensitivity of the matters that touch on life of numerous people, there are cases of miscarriage of justice at higher levels of justice represented by greed for wealth that is also used to cover up responsibility. The author also highlights the complexity of the disruption by stating that
“…there is no tragic hero, here, no guilty one to recognize his flaws; only systems which act anonymously, thousands of faceless victims and a generalized tragic condition in which the language of guilt and responsibility must be transformed,” (Nandrea, 31).
What amounts to responsibility of wrongdoing under the refined justice system is not necessarily a direct sense of guilt. Omission and commission both take shape and meaning under the justice system, where everybody ought to look at their actions, to always take part in doing good for the society. Refraining from wrong does not exempt anyone from the responsibility of alleviating or mitigating the loss or suffering sustained by others (32). Representing the case involving the two doctors accused of taking part in the loss of a hemophiliac child is depicted as one of the other loophole of justice, even if the evidence bring the culprit closer to justice mechanism. Achieving justice in such a case, as the author argues cannot bring back to life the dead as occasioned by the acts of omission or commission of others. It therefore implies that while justice aims are reinstating individuals to the state similar to the one before being aggrieved, it is not almost possible (33).
As mentioned earlier, it is the function of justice to ensure that the circumstances of the case are interrogated to determine the appropriate intervention for the various cases (34). While punishment may appear to be synonymous with the justice system from a distance, it is also a channel to extend reconciliation, establish truth in uncertainties and allow individuals to feel the act of coming forward to witness as their civil responsibility. Everybody has the responsibility of taking charge of the society and avoid miscarriage of justice through complications evident in the modern society (36).