In this volume, Swedish human rights activist and political figure, Hans Göran Franck, examines the administration of the death penalty from a historical perspective. The author’s opinions are based on his lifelong work and devotion to abolishing the ‘barbaric punishment’. Building upon previously unpublished material and considerable detail drawn from Franck’s personal experiences, it focuses on both the progressive developments within European countries and institutions over several decades, and the frustratingly retrograde situation that prevails in the United States. The author dedicated this book to those facing a sentence of death. During the course of his work, the author traveled to numerous countries and met many condemned men and women. Publication of this important volume, which comes a few years after Hans Göran Franck’s untimely passing, coincides with a major development to which he contributed, the adoption of Protocol No. 13 to the European Convention on Human Rights, which abolishes capital punishment in both wartime and peacetime. William A. Schabas a law professor who specializes in the subject of capital punishment, has ensured that the manuscript is up to date, and contributed the introductory chapter.