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7 Guoshi Killing: The Continuum of Criminal Intent in Qing and Republican China

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines guoshi killings that fell under the definition of accidental acts. The crime of killing with a cart or horse was considered slightly more serious than killing with a bow and arrow, and as a result burial costs were also required of one who committed this crime in addition to the mandated beating and exile. The term "killing at play" had originated in the Tang Code, where it was a graded offense. Early drafts of the 1912 Provisional Criminal Code (the first Republican-era criminal code) as well as subsequent drafts and editions of the Criminal Code of the Republic of China confirmed this framework. Qing law had provided situational guidelines to help identify the category of intent involved in a crime. In Republican criminal law, however, there were only two mental categories of criminal culpability.

Keywords: 1912 Provisional Criminal Code; accidental acts; guoshi killings; Qing law; Republic of China; Republican criminal law; Tang Code



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