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Phil-Law-Sophy Journal Club: Blame and Responsibility in Criminal Law

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May 12, 2014 12:45pm - 2:00pm

Room 85
Barbara Fried, William W. and Gertrude H. Saunders Professor of Law, leads a discussion based on her recent article in the Boston Review on the philosophical foundations of criminal punishment.
 
Certain assumptions about what makes individuals blameworthy underlie current debates about crime rates, recidivism, and prison overpopulation. But serious reflection on free will and moral responsibility leads many to reconsider whether those assumptions are sound. In light of the current state of criminal justice in America, scholars of various stripes have started to press the question: can we really blame criminals for their actions? And what are the implications for practitioners of criminal law as a result?