Mob Law

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Mob Law


self-initiated reprisal against an actual or alleged criminal, usually involving torture. During the Middle Ages in Western Europe, mob law existed in various forms: as club-law, the legalized self-initiated action allowed when court defense of a claim was denied, and a theme court, a tool for quick and merciless reprisals against the peasantry. Mob law, including ritual murder, was not infrequently the consequence of religious fanaticism skillfully roused by a church-backed belief in witchcraft.

Some forms of mob law have survived in modern bourgeois states. These forms include lynching in the United States, setting off bombs in public places, and planning accidents in transport vehicles.

Soviet law has established criminal responsibility in cases involving the moribund form of mob law known as the blood feud.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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While primarily examining white legal culture and the roots of postbellum white mob law, the author also explores black southerners' political aspirations and factionalism and examines (though less persuasively) their use of the law as a way to unveil their world-view.
The lynch mob law enforcement behavior has here reached its apocalyptic level of absurdity, shooting at plaster images of black bodies when it cannot find a human black body.
A patrol car arrived and an officer calmed down the furious crowd telling them: "Mob law is not the answer."
Another public official prone to resorting to mob law is Tsenko Chokov, Mayor of the northwestern village of Galiche.
And, if mob law is allowed to rule, who is to say completely innocent people will not be targeted?
PROTEST: Amy, nine, shows off her banner; MOB LAW: Effigy of gallows is held up; UNITED: Children joined their parents during the protest rally outside the men's hostel
Gardai will tell residents' associations that mob law will no longer be tolerated.
Instead, citizens try to solve their problems themselves trough mob law."