Erkenntnis 83 (5):1003-1025 (2018)

Authors
Luca Malatesti
University of Rijeka
Marko Jurjako
University of Rijeka
Abstract
Recently it has been argued that certain neuropsychological findings on the decision-making, instrumental learning, and moral understanding in psychopathic offenders offer reasons to consider them not criminally responsible, due to certain epistemic and volitional impairments. We reply to this family of arguments, that collectively we call the irresponsibility of the psychopath argument. This type of argument has a premise that describes or prescribes the deficiencies that grant or should grant partial or complete criminal exculpation. The other premise contends that neuropsychological evidence shows that psychopaths have incapacitates that are sufficient to ascribe complete or partially exculpatory deficiencies. The focus of our criticism is this latter premise. We argue that it requires that psychopathy should correlate significantly with certain rational incapacities that manifest across contexts. We show that the available neuropsychological data do not support the claim that psychopaths have such general exculpatory incapacities.
Keywords psychopathy  criminal responsibility  neuropsychological correlates  general and specific incapacities
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Reprint years 2017, 2018
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DOI 10.1007/s10670-017-9924-0
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Citations of this work BETA

Are Psychopaths Legally Insane?Anneli Jefferson & Katrina Sifferd - 2018 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 14 (1):79-96.
Is Psychopathy a Harmful Dysfunction?Marko Jurjako - 2019 - Biology and Philosophy 34 (5):1-23.

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