Criminal Law and Philosophy 8 (3):619-633 (2014)

Steven Sverdlik
Southern Methodist University
The reform of offenders is often said to be one of the morally legitimate aims of punishment. After briefly surveying the history of reformist thinking I examine the ‘quasi-reform’ theories, as I call them, of H. Morris, J. Hampton and A. Duff. I explain how they conceive of reform, and what role they take it to have in the criminal justice system. I then focus critically on one feature of their conception of reform, namely, the claim that a reformed offender will obey the relevant laws for moral reasons. I argue on consequentialist grounds that this requirement is objectionable. Consequentialism has always accepted reform as one legitimate goal of punishment, but it will not accept the narrowly moral conception of it that we find in the quasi-reform theorists. I situate my criticism within criminal law theory, but I also consider the claim in moral theory that acting from moral motives has intrinsic value
Keywords Punishment  Reform  Duff  Motives  Morality  Consequentialism
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DOI 10.1007/s11572-013-9226-9
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References found in this work BETA

The Concept of Law.Hla Hart - 1961 - Oxford University Press.
Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals.Immanuel Kant - 1785/2002 - Oxford University Press.
Acting for the Right Reasons.Julia Markovits - 2010 - Philosophical Review 119 (2):201-242.

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Giving Wrongdoers What They Deserve.Steven Sverdlik - 2016 - The Journal of Ethics 20 (4):385-399.

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