Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 8 of 8

Full-Text Articles in Law

Provocation Manslaughter As Partial Justification And Partial Excuse, Mitchell N. Berman, Ian Farrell Jan 2011

Provocation Manslaughter As Partial Justification And Partial Excuse, Mitchell N. Berman, Ian Farrell

All Faculty Scholarship

The partial defense of provocation provides that a person who kills in the heat of passion brought on by legally adequate provocation is guilty of manslaughter rather than murder. It traces back to the twelfth century, and exists today, in some form, in almost every U.S. state and other common law jurisdictions. But long history and wide application have not produced agreement on the rationale for the doctrine. To the contrary, the search for a coherent and satisfying rationale remains among the main occupations of criminal law theorists. The dominant scholarly view holds that provocation is best explained and defended …


Two Kinds Of Retributivism, Mitchell N. Berman Jan 2011

Two Kinds Of Retributivism, Mitchell N. Berman

All Faculty Scholarship

This essay, written as a contribution to a forthcoming volume on the philosophical foundations of the criminal law, challenges the longstanding dominant framework for classifying justifications for criminal punishment. The familiar binary distinction between consequentialism and retributivism is no longer most perspicuous, I argue, because many recognizably retributivist theories of punishment employ a consequentialist justificatory structure. However, because not all do, it might prove most illuminating to carve the retributivist field in two – distinguishing what we might term “consequentialist retributivism” (perhaps better labeled “instrumentalist retributivism”) from “non-consequentialist retributivism” (“non-instrumentalist retributivism”).

Whether or not it is ultimately persuasive, consequentialist retributivism …


Self-Defense, Permissions, And The Means Principle: A Reply To Quong, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan Jan 2011

Self-Defense, Permissions, And The Means Principle: A Reply To Quong, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan

All Faculty Scholarship

In “Killing in Self-Defense” (119 Ethics 507 (2009)), Jonathan Quong claims that one may kill innocent aggressors and threats in self-defense, but he denies that it follows from his position that innocent bystanders may also be killed when one acts defensively. Quong argues that defenders have an agent-relative permission to favor their own lives over others’. However, there are moral constraints, including that one may not “use someone as a mere means,” and Quong claims that it is this constraint that prohibits the killing of innocent bystanders. To reach this conclusion, Quong construes the “means principle” quite broadly to include …


The Unsolved Mysteries Of Causation And Responsibility, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan Jan 2011

The Unsolved Mysteries Of Causation And Responsibility, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan

All Faculty Scholarship

This article is part of a symposium on Michael Moore's Causation and Responsibility. In Causation and Responsibility, Moore adopts a scalar approach to factual causation, with counterfactual dependency serving as an independent desert basis. Moore’s theory of causation does not include proximate causation. The problem with Moore's argument is that the problems with which proximate causation dealt - how and when to limit cause in fact - remain unresolved. In this paper, I focus on two sets of problems. The first set is the “fit” or categorization problems within the criminal law. I focus on three matches: (1) the fit …


Blackmail, Mitchell N. Berman Jan 2011

Blackmail, Mitchell N. Berman

All Faculty Scholarship

Blackmail - the wrongful conditional threat to do what would be permissible - presents one of the great puzzles of the criminal law, and perhaps all of law, for it forces us to explain how it can be impermissible to threaten what it would be permissible to do. This essay, a contribution to forthcoming collection of papers on the philosophy of the criminal law, seeks to resolve the puzzle by building on, and refining, an account of blackmail that I first proposed over a decade ago, what I termed the "evidentiary theory of blackmail." In doing so, it also critically …


An Accurate Diagnosis, But Is There A Cure?: An Appreciation Of The Role Of Science In Law By Robin Feldman, Stephen J. Morse Jan 2011

An Accurate Diagnosis, But Is There A Cure?: An Appreciation Of The Role Of Science In Law By Robin Feldman, Stephen J. Morse

All Faculty Scholarship

Review of Robin Feldman, The Role of Science in Law (Oxford 2009).


Beyond Crime And Commitment: Justifying Liberty Deprivations Of The Dangerous And Responsible, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan Jan 2011

Beyond Crime And Commitment: Justifying Liberty Deprivations Of The Dangerous And Responsible, Kimberly Kessler Ferzan

All Faculty Scholarship

The traditional approaches to dangerous persons have been crime and commitment. The criminal law punishes responsible actors, and the civil law confines the mentally ill. These approaches leave a gap: The state cannot substantially restrict the liberty of responsible actors until they have committed a crime. In response to this gap, the criminal law’s boundaries have expanded to include preparatory offenses and early inchoate conduct that are deserving of only minimal, if any, punishment in attempt to incarcerate the dangerous. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court’s effort to articulate a test of mental disease warranting involuntary confinement of sexual predators has failed …


"Let 'Em Play" A Study In The Jurisprudence Of Sport, Mitchell N. Berman Jan 2011

"Let 'Em Play" A Study In The Jurisprudence Of Sport, Mitchell N. Berman

All Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.