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Reason, Morality, and LawThe Philosophy of John Finnis$
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John Keown and Robert P. George

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199675500

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199675500.001.0001

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Retributivism in the Spirit of Finnis *

Retributivism in the Spirit of Finnis *

Chapter:
(p.167) 11 Retributivism in the Spirit of Finnis*
Source:
Reason, Morality, and Law
Author(s):

Matthew H. Kramer

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199675500.003.0012

John Finnis' contributions to the philosophy of criminal law have received somewhat less attention than a number of his other jurisprudential insights. This chapter highlights the virtues of his work on the central purpose of punishment, by elaborating a version of retributivism that is quite closely similar to his. The arguments are significantly different from those which Finnis presents — for example, no importance is attached whatsoever to the degree of correspondence between the author's positions and those advocated by Thomas Aquinas or other medieval philosophers. The upshot of this discussion is to underscore the solidity of Finnis' reflections on the moral role of punishment.

Keywords:   retributivism, punishment, John Finnis, philosophy of criminal law

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