Chapter

Death and Retribution

Matthew H. Kramer

in The Ethics of Capital Punishment

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780199642182
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191732188 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199642182.003.0003
Death and Retribution

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This chapter expounds several varieties of retributivism and then maintains that none of them can support the institution of capital punishment. Although the tenets of retributivism do not themselves rule out the legitimacy of the death penalty, such a penalty is indeed disallowed by those tenets in combination with the liberal-democratic Minimal Invasion Principle (which requires that a government's pursuit of any legitimate public purpose must be conducted through the least invasive or restrictive means).

Keywords: retributivism; legitimacy; Minimal Invasion Principle; public purpose

Chapter.  35453 words. 

Subjects: Criminal Law

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