Chapter

Law, Neuroscience, and Criminal Culpability

Lisa Claydon

in Law and Neuroscience

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199599844
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725227 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199599844.003.0009

Series: Current Legal Issues

Law, Neuroscience, and Criminal Culpability

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This chapter examines the relationship between explanations of human behaviour drawn from neuroscientific imaging and the approach adopted by the criminal law to establishing the legal framework for evaluating guilt or innocence. It questions whether purely scientific approaches provide a sufficient understanding of what it means to be guilty or innocent of a crime. It considers what pictures of brain states may tell us about culpability and concludes by considering whether the present philosophical basis of the criminal law is sufficiently robust to withstand some claims that are being made about what neuroscience tells us about brain states.

Keywords: human behaviour; neuroimaging; criminal law; guilt; innocence; criminal culpability

Chapter.  15868 words. 

Subjects: Medical and Healthcare Law

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