For a Consequentialist Theory

John Braithwaite and Philip Pettit

in Not Just Deserts

Published in print October 1992 | ISBN: 9780198240563
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680205 | DOI:

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

For a Consequentialist Theory

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The upshot of Chapter 2 is that we ought to have a normative theory which will tell us how all the various matters that are settled by a criminal justice system should be determined. We ought to have a comprehensive theory for assessing issues as widespread as what ought to be criminalized, what ought to be policed, what ought to be investigated, and what ought to be brought before the courts. This chapter is concerned with the nature of the criterion which the theory of criminal justice ought to deploy. There are two very different sorts of criteria that it might try to use, one consequentialist or teleological, the other deontological. It argues that the criterion ideally ought to be consequentialist. It makes the case for a consequentialist theory of criminal justice.

Keywords: criminal justice; legal theory; consequentialist theory; normative theory; crime; punishment

Chapter.  6292 words. 

Subjects: Social and Political Philosophy

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