Punishment and Repentance
Philosophy 81 (2006), pp.279-322.
49 Pages Posted: 31 Jan 2015
Date Written: January 1, 2006
This paper presents an original version of the communicative theory of punishment. On this view, the overarching aim of punishment is the communication of justified censure. This version of the theory differs from others in being pluralistic; in particular, it allows considerations of mercy, in addition to considerations of retributive desert, to play a central role in the justification of punishment and the determination of its extent. The paper concludes with some thoughts on repentance as a ground for mercy within the theory.
Keywords: punishment, mercy, retributive justice, communicative theory, repentance
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