Ignorance of Law: A Philosophical Inquiry by Douglas HusakIgnorance of Law: A Philosophical Inquiry by Douglas Husak

Ignorance of Law: A Philosophical Inquiry

byDouglas Husak

Hardcover | September 1, 2016

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This book argues that ignorance of law should usually be a complete excuse from criminal liability. It defends this conclusion by invoking two presumptions: first, the content of criminal law should conform to morality; second, mistakes of fact and mistakes of law should be treatedsymmetrically. The author grounds his position in an underlying theory of moral and criminal responsibility according to which blameworthiness consists in a defective response to the moral reasons one has. Since persons cannot be faulted for failing to respond to reasons for criminal liability theydo not believe they have, then ignorance should almost always excuse. But persons are somewhat responsible for their wrongs when their mistakes of law are reckless, that is, when they consciously disregard a substantial and unjustifiable risk that their conduct might be wrong. This book illustratesthis with examples and critiques the arguments to the contrary offered by criminal theorists and moral philosophers. It assesses the real-world implications for the U.S. system of criminal justice. The author describes connections between the problem of ignorance of law and other topics in moral andlegal theory.
Douglas Husak is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers University. He is the author of over one-hundred scholarly articles and six books, most notably: The Philosophy of Criminal Law (Oxford, 2010), Overcriminalization (Oxford, 2008), and Drugs and Rights (1992). He has been a Visiting Professor at several law schools and ph...
Title:Ignorance of Law: A Philosophical InquiryFormat:HardcoverDimensions:312 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.98 inPublished:September 1, 2016Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0190604689

ISBN - 13:9780190604684

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