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The Moral Limits of the Criminal Law Volume 3: Harm to Self$
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Joel Feinberg

Print publication date: 1989

Print ISBN-13: 9780195059236

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195059239.001.0001

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Failures of Consent: Coercive Force

Failures of Consent: Coercive Force

(p.189) 23 Failures of Consent: Coercive Force
The Moral Limits of the Criminal Law Volume 3: Harm to Self

Joel Feinberg

Oxford University Press

Acts of consent, like acts generally, are involuntary when the actor is forced to do what he does, whatever his own preferences in the matter. In this chapter, Feinberg discusses cases in which an actor expressly gives his consent, but the consent lacks moral or legal effect because it was forced rather than free (thus, rendering it invalid). The line between forcing to act and merely getting to act is drawn somewhere in the manipulation or persuasion part of the scale, possibly moving within a narrow range as our purposes shift. Feinberg also examines the effect of second‐party coercion, differential and other coercive pressure, and moralistic theories of coercion on consent.

Keywords:   coercion, consent, involuntary

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