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The Probable and The Provable$
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L. Jonathan Cohen

Print publication date: 1977

Print ISBN-13: 9780198244127

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198244127.001.0001

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Resolution of Six Difficulties for a Mathematicist Account of Judicial Proof

Resolution of Six Difficulties for a Mathematicist Account of Judicial Proof

(p.265) 19 Resolution of Six Difficulties for a Mathematicist Account of Judicial Proof
The Probable and The Provable

L. Jonathan Cohen

Oxford University Press

This chapter shows the resolution of six difficulties for a mathematicist account of judicial proof. It first reports the difficulty about conjunction. It also addresses the difficulty about inference. The non-complementational negation principle for inductive probability ensures that, on an inductivist account, the standard of proof in civil cases does not officially condone a positive probability of injustice. Proof beyond reasonable doubt is proof at the level of inductive certainty. The inductivist analysis elucidates why ordinary juries are competent to assess judicial proofs. Moreover, convergence and corroboration, and their appropriate independence conditions, can be readily explained in terms of inductive probability, with no difficulty arising about prior probabilities.

Keywords:   judicial proof, conjunction, inference, negation principle, inductive probability, inductivist analysis, convergence, corroboration

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