Self-Defense

THE ROUTLEDGE COMPANION TO PHILOSOPHY OF LAW, Andrei Marmor, ed., Routledge Philosophy Companions, Forthcoming

San Diego Legal Studies Paper No. 11-065

31 Pages Posted: 8 Sep 2011  

Larry Alexander

University of San Diego School of Law

Abstract

In this encyclopedia entry, I set forth all of the factors that a complete theory of self-defense must consider. On some of those factors, I have and express an opinion. On others, I leave matters unresolved. What is most significant, however, is that self-defense is preemptive: it occurs before the anticipated act to which it is a response. Yet, almost none of the extant voluminous literature on self-defense addresses the epistemological standards that should govern preemptive responses, standards regarding the probability of the anticipated act and its consequences and whether the actor is culpable or nonculpable.

Keywords: self-defense, culpable aggressor, innocent aggressor, retreat, proportionality

JEL Classification: K10

Suggested Citation

Alexander, Larry, Self-Defense. THE ROUTLEDGE COMPANION TO PHILOSOPHY OF LAW, Andrei Marmor, ed., Routledge Philosophy Companions, Forthcoming; San Diego Legal Studies Paper No. 11-065. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1924513

Lawrence Alexander (Contact Author)

University of San Diego School of Law ( email )

5998 Alcala Park
San Diego, CA 92110-2492
United States
619-260-2317 (Phone)
619-260-4728 (Fax)

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