Crime, Freedom and Civic Bonds: Arthur Ripstein's Force and Freedom: Kant's Legal and Political Philosophy [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Criminal Law and Philosophy 6 (2):255-272 (2012)
There is no question Arthur Ripstein’s Force and Freedom is an engaging and powerful book which will inform legal philosophy, particularly Kantian theories, for years to come. The text explores with care Kant’s legal and political philosophy, distinguishing it from his better known moral theory. Nor is Ripstein’s book simply a recounting of Kant’s legal and political theory. Ripstein develops Kant’s views in his own unique vision illustrating fresh ways of viewing the entire Kantian project. But the same strength and coherence which ties the book to Kant’s important values of independence blinds the work to our shared moral ties grounded in other political values. Ripstein’s thoughts on punishment are novel in that he embeds criminal law, both in its retributivist and consequentialist facets, into Kant’s overarching political philosophy to show how criminal law can be seen as one aspect of the supremacy of public law. But a criminal law solely focused on the preservation of freedom takes little notice of the ways criminal law need expand its view to account for how a polity can restore the victim of a crime back to civic equality, reincorporate offenders after they have been punished and cannot leave past offenders isolated and likely to reoffend, resulting in the rotating door prison system and communities of innocents who remain preyed upon by career criminals. Lastly, a political theory that does not prize our civic bonds will ignore the startling balkanization of our criminal punishment practices, where policing, arresting and imprisonment become tools of racial and social oppression. In illustrating the benefits in viewing criminal law as a coherent part of Kant’s political theory of freedom, Ripstein also highlights what is absent. It then becomes clear that though Kant presents one important facet of punishment, only a republican political theory can meet the most pressing moral demands of punishment by reminding us that criminal law must be used to preserve and strengthen civic society.
|Keywords||Ripstein Kant Force and freedom|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Philip Pettit (1997). Republicanism: A Theory of Freedom and Government. Oxford University Press.
Richard Kraut (2002). Aristotle: Political Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
George P. Fletcher (2007). The Grammar of Criminal Law: American, Comparative, and International. Oxford University Press.
H. L. A. Hart (1970). Punishment and Responsibility. Philosophy 45 (172):162-162.
Immanuel Kant (1930). Lectures on Ethics. London, Methuen & Co. Ltd..
Citations of this work BETA
Ekow N. Yankah (2013). Legal Vices and Civic Virtue: Vice Crimes, Republicanism and the Corruption of Lawfulness. [REVIEW] Criminal Law and Philosophy 7 (1):61-82.
Similar books and articles
Arthur Ripstein (2009). Force and Freedom: Kant's Legal and Political Philosophy. Harvard University Press.
Alyssa R. Bernstein (2010). Review of Ripstein, Force and Freedom: Kant's Legal and Political Philosophy. [REVIEW] Journal of the History of Philosophy 48 (4):531-532.
Laura Valentini (2012). Kant, Ripstein and the Circle of Freedom: A Critical Note. European Journal of Philosophy 20 (3):450-459.
William A. Edmundson (2010). Review: Ripstein, Force and Freedom: Kant's Legal and Political Philosophy. [REVIEW] Ethics 120 (4):869-873.
Allen W. Wood (2009). Review: Ripstein, Force and Freedom: Kant's Legal and Political Philosophy. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2009 (11).
Dennis J. Baker (2008). The Harm Principle Vs. Kantian Criteria for Ensuring Fair, Principled and Just Criminalisation. Australian Journal of Legal Philosophy 33 (66):66-99.
Jennifer K. Uleman (2004). External Freedom in Kant's Rechtslehre: Political, Metaphysical. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (3):578–601.
Garrath Williams (2012). Between Ethics and Right: Kantian Politics and Democratic Purposes. European Journal of Philosophy 20 (3):479-486.
Kimberley Brownlee (2013). Digging Up, Dismantling, and Redesigning the Criminal Law. Criminal Law and Philosophy 7 (1):169-178.
John Arthur & William H. Shaw (eds.) (2010). Readings in the Philosophy of Law. Pearson Prentice Hall.
Johann Gottlieb Fichte (2000). Foundations of Natural Right: According to the Principles of the Wissenschaftslehre. Cambridge University Press.
Matthew H. Kramer (ed.) (2008). The Legacy of H.L.A. Hart: Legal, Political, and Moral Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
B. Sharon Byrd (1989). Kant's Theory of Punishment: Deterrence in its Threat, Retribution in its Execution. [REVIEW] Law and Philosophy 8 (2):151 - 200.
Larry Alexander (2009). Crime and Culpability: A Theory of Criminal Law. Cambridge University Press.
Added to index2012-03-06
Total downloads18 ( #150,651 of 1,725,308 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #349,101 of 1,725,308 )
How can I increase my downloads?