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Free Will and Modern Science$
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Richard Swinburne

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264898

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264898.001.0001

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What kind of responsibility must criminal law presuppose?

What kind of responsibility must criminal law presuppose?

(p.178) 11 What kind of responsibility must criminal law presuppose?
Free Will and Modern Science


British Academy

This chapter argues that the kind of responsibility that we must have, if the enterprise of criminal law and punishment is to be consistent with the demands of justice, is something much more modest, much less metaphysically ambitious, than the ‘ultimate’ responsibility that Strawson so persuasively denies in Chapter 8. If we are to be clear about the kind of responsibility that is relevant to criminal law, we must first be clear about the criminal law itself — about the kind of enterprise that it is, about the aims that it should serve, about the principles that should structure it, and about the conditions it demands of us.

Keywords:   criminal law, responsibility, punishment, Strawson, ultimate responsibility

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