Being Fully Excused for Wrongdoing

Pacific Philosophical Quarterly (2022)
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On the classical understanding, an agent is fully excused for an action if and only if performing this action was a case of faultless wrongdoing. A major motivation for this view is the apparent existence of paradigmatic types of excusing considerations, affecting fault but not wrongness. I show that three such considerations, ignorance, duress and compulsion, can be shown to have direct bearing on the permissibility of actions. The appeal to distinctly identifiable excusing considerations thus does not stand up to closer scrutiny, undermining the classical view and giving us reason to seek alternative ways of drawing the justification/excuse distinction.

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Author's Profile

Daniele Bruno
Humboldt University, Berlin

References found in this work

Responsibility and the Moral Sentiments.R. Jay Wallace - 1994 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
The Moral Nexus.R. Jay Wallace - 2019 - Princeton: Princeton University Press.
4. Responsibility and the Limits of Evil: Variations on a Strawsonian Theme.Gary Watson - 1993 - In John Martin Fischer & Mark Ravizza (eds.), Perspectives on moral responsibility. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. pp. 119-148.
Fairness and the Architecture of Responsibility.David O. Brink & Dana K. Nelkin - 2013 - Oxford Studies in Agency and Responsibility 1:284-313.

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