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Stoning As A Corporal Punishment

According to (Follis 207-231), stoning is a type of punishment where the person who has been convicted against a particular law that is legal is punished to death by throwing stones at a group of people. This type of punishment is unlike beheading, where only one individual is involved in the act of killing the person who has been found guilty. This type of punishment was used as one way of trying to bring community justice to all the members.

Stoning has been conducted on those who have been found guilty of committing crimes such as adultery, prostitution, murderers and sodomy. Stoning has always faced rejection from a large number of communities as it is seen as a very inhuman act among those involved. Stoning is mainly practised in many Islamic regions, but also, in the early days, stoning was practised among the Christians (Follis 207-231).

In Muslim communities, stoning is seen as a tradition that Muhammad mainly influenced. Islam borrowed the act of stoning from the Jewish people, and whenever they passed a sentence to the person who was guilty, they referred to the Jewish law. Later on, the Jews changed their adultery laws, which Muhammad, the leader of Islam, criticized so much.

In the following sections, I am going to discuss the crimes that lead to stoning, those who are mostly affected, where it was conducted (stoning location), how it was carried out, evidence that leads to stoning and how to curb this stoning punishment as most Muslims tend to ignore the rule of law of human rights by the international government interventions.

Crimes Leading To Stoning

To begin, the major stoning is associated with committing adultery. Adultery involves committing a sexual crime where one of the parties involved is married, and the other is unmarried or both of them are married but not to each other (between a married man by law who has a lasting or permanent known wife or a woman who is married by law with her husband known). In most Muslim religious areas, adultery is considered illegal, and any person found guilty is stoned to death. Rape cases also are considered as adultery. This mostly affects women who are being abused by the majors. In Islam, any woman who was found to be raped was stoned to death and accused of adultery. This is considered as sex outside marriage, which is related to adultery (Follis 207-231).

Secondly, those who practised sodomy were not spared in any case for stoning as a corporal punishment. Sodomy is the practice of engaging in same-sex, commonly referred to as homosexual. This is sex that is mostly practised by men in some communities or countries because of Sharia law. Even though the law may allow the death penalty, it does not allow it to be conducted. Any person who was found guilty of sodomy through Sharia law was stoned to death because it was against God’s will of creation.

Finally, murderers and those who practised prostitution were also stoned to death if found. Prostitution refers to conducting sex for pay. Any person who practised prostitution either directly for financial gain or indirectly through pimping was reliable for the punishment. This was done by several groups of people who did it publicly so that other people could watch it and learn not to practice the same prohibited acts. This group of people were not judged in any court by stoning people to death.

Execution Procedures

In terms of execution, there is a slight difference between the Islamic and Christians. For Islam, the condemner was to accept four times, after which his conviction took place. The sentencing occurs if both the victim and the one who has been wronged accept the crime. This was constituted by the presence of four of them who are males (Wang and Xing 119-128). In the absence of the four males, three males were used, and two women were used. Since some other time, adultery is difficult to prove, judges can also convict the person based on instinctive feelings. The condemners who are stoned are buried partially for Islam. But if the condemner escapes is left to go freely. Traditionally, women are buried up to their chest while men are buried up to the waist (Wang and Xing 119-128).

For Christians, judges who are not less than twenty-three must agree that the victim committed the offence, after which a death sentence is issued to him or her. The execution took outside the courts. For the stoning punishment, the condemned is thrown medium-sized stones to him by the witnesses and judges until he dies. For the males, he removes all the clothes except that covering private genitals to be stoned (Wang and Xing 119-128). For the woman, she removes all the clothes and covers both her front and back, but at some times, they can be undressed completely.

All these condemners are not buried at their fathers’ homes but at the court’s place, where the execution begins until it ends. The stoning comes to an end when the relatives come to court to testify that the judgment was true.

Where Stoning Is Conducted

People who were found guilty and had to be stoned to death in a particular location. Mostly, stoning was carried out in public. This was to ensure that some individuals witnessed the execution process and make it evidence that the killing was legal and the person was stoned because of the act committed (Lenta 74-88).

Also, immediately after the sentence had been passed by the judge in the court, the executioners took the person outside and stoned him. The execution was also carried out in the prisons where the condemners awaited to be sentenced. Finally, the stoning of people to death was carried out in deserts or jungles.

Mostly Affected

According to (Lenta 74-88) a lot of campaigns shows that mostly women are the ones who are accused of adultery than their male counterparts. This is because, according to the traditions and laws that exist, women are the ones who are prone to extramarital sex and are made to accept crimes that they did not commit. Most men, after being divorced, are allowed to marry another wife, unlike ladies who are restricted and likely to lose their children. Men who are condemned of adultery have a high chance of acquiring better lawyers to free them from the situation and avoid being stoned to death.

Campaigns To Stop Stoning

Many people have started the campaign against stoning, especially the Muslims who are majorly affected, referring to it as a barbaric act, and condemners should be executed for very serious offences committed. More superior and powerful Islamic leaders have contributed to stopping stoning because it is destroying their name as a community (Lenta 74-88).

In conclusion, stoning as a corporal punishment occurs when a person has committed crimes such as adultery, prostitution, murder and sodomy. It is commonly practised in the Islamic regions such as Pakistan and Iran (Wang and Xing 119-128). Due to its barbaric nature and being seen as unethical to these communities, most of its prominent leaders have started a worldwide campaign to stop it. This is because they see the act as inhumane to those who are condemned.


  1. Lenta, Patrick. “Is Corporal Punishment Torturous?.” Journal of Applied Philosophy 34.1 (2015): 74-88. Web.
  2. Follis, Luca. “Democratic Punishment And The Archive Of Violence: Punishment, Publicity And Corporal Excess In Antebellum New York.” Journal of Historical Sociology 29.2 (2014): 207-231. Web.
  3. Wang, Meifang, and Xiaopei Xing. “Intergenerational Transmission Of Parental Corporal Punishment In China: The Moderating Role Of Spouse’s Corporal Punishment.” Journal of Family Violence 29.2 (2014): 119-128. Web.



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