Legal and moral responsibility

Philosophy Compass 4 (6):978-986 (2009)
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Abstract

The paper begins with the plausible view that criminal responsibility should track moral responsibility, and explains its plausibility. A necessary distinction is then drawn between liability and answerability as two dimensions of responsibility, and is shown to underpin the distinction in criminal law between offences and defences. This enables us to distinguish strict liability from strict answerability, and to see that whilst strict criminal liability seems inconsistent with the principle that criminal responsibility should track moral responsibility, strict criminal answerability is not. We must ask, therefore, whether, when and why strict criminal responsibility is unacceptable.

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2009-11-26

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R. A. Duff
University of Stirling

Citations of this work

Responsibility as Answerability.Angela M. Smith - 2015 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (2):99-126.
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Minding Negligence.Craig K. Agule - 2022 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 16 (2):231-251.

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References found in this work

Responsibility and Control: A Theory of Moral Responsibility.John Martin Fischer & Mark Ravizza - 1998 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Mark Ravizza.
Responsibility and the Moral Sentiments.R. Jay Wallace - 1994 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Agency and answerability: selected essays.Gary Watson - 2004 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Punishment and Responsibility.H. L. A. Hart - 1968 - Philosophy 45 (172):162-162.

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