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Can Shaming Punishments Educate?

In the University of Chicago Law Review, Vol. 65, No. 4, 1998.

Posted: 19 Oct 1998  

Stephen P. Garvey

Cornell Law School

Date Written: January 1998


So-called "shaming" penalties have received a fair amount of attention in the popular press and, thanks primarily to the work of Dan Kahan and Toni Massaro, in the legal literature as well. Unfortunately, the current debate focuses on "shame" as the main way to understand what these penalties are all about. I argue that at least some of these so-called shaming penalties are better understood as "educative" penalties. I develop this "educating model" and contrast it with the "shaming model." I also suggest that penalties fitting the educating model have more normative appeal than those fitting the shaming model.

Suggested Citation

Garvey, Stephen P., Can Shaming Punishments Educate? (January 1998). In the University of Chicago Law Review, Vol. 65, No. 4, 1998.. Available at SSRN:

Stephen P. Garvey (Contact Author)

Cornell Law School ( email )

Myron Taylor Hall
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853-4901
United States
607-255-8589 (Phone)
607-255-7193 (Fax)

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