Law and Philosophy 41 (1):105-125 (2022)

Erin Kelly
University of Colorado, Boulder
In Recognizing Wrongs, John C. P. Goldberg and Benjamin C. Zipursky develop and defend “civil recourse theory,” according to which torts are injurious wrongs that give rise to a claim of redress. My discussion extends beyond tort law to explore the ethics of reparations for historical injustice, in particular, regarding the case of Black Americans. I begin by relating the notion of wrongdoing that figures prominently in civil recourse theory to morality. Then I explore the idea that the relevant sort of wrongdoing is relational and injurious, and how this claim applies to historical injustice. Finally, I take up the idea that a redress claim is one a victim is entitled but not obligated to make in order to think about whether the discretionary nature of tort action is empowering to persons who have been wrongfully injured.
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DOI 10.1007/s10982-021-09415-9
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