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Patrick Tomlin
University of Warwick
  1. Moral Uncertainty and Permissibility: Evaluating Option Sets.Christian Barry & Patrick Tomlin - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (6):1-26.
    In this essay, we explore an issue of moral uncertainty: what we are permitted to do when we are unsure about which moral principles are correct. We develop a novel approach to this issue that incorporates important insights from previous work on moral uncertainty, while avoiding some of the difficulties that beset existing alternative approaches. Our approach is based on evaluating and choosing between option sets rather than particular conduct options. We show how our approach is particularly well-suited to address (...)
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  2. Choices Chance and Change: Luck Egalitarianism Over Time.Patrick Tomlin - 2013 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16 (2):393-407.
    The family of theories dubbed ‘luck egalitarianism’ represent an attempt to infuse egalitarian thinking with a concern for personal responsibility, arguing that inequalities are just when they result from, or the extent to which they result from, choice, but are unjust when they result from, or the extent to which they result from, luck. In this essay I argue that luck egalitarians should sometimes seek to limit inequalities, even when they have a fully choice-based pedigree (i.e., result only from the (...)
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  3.  52
    Extending the Golden Thread? Criminalisation and the Presumption of Innocence.Patrick Tomlin - 2013 - Journal of Political Philosophy 21 (1):44-66.
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  4.  34
    Saplings or Caterpillars? Trying to Understand Children's Wellbeing.Patrick Tomlin - 2018 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 35 (S1):29-46.
    Is childhood valuable? And is childhood as, less, or more, valuable than adulthood? In this article I first delineate several different questions that we might be asking when we think about the ‘value of childhood’, and I explore some difficulties of doing so. I then focus on the question of whether childhood is good for the person who experiences it. I argue for two key claims. First, if childhood wellbeing is measured by the same standards as adulthood, then children are (...)
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    Saplings or Caterpillars? Trying to Understand Children's Wellbeing.Patrick Tomlin - 2018 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 35 (S1):29-46.
    Is childhood valuable? And is childhood as, less, or more, valuable than adulthood? In this article I first delineate several different questions that we might be asking when we think about the ‘value of childhood’, and I explore some difficulties of doing so. I then focus on the question of whether childhood is good for the person who experiences it. I argue for two key claims. First, if childhood wellbeing is measured by the same standards as adulthood, then children are (...)
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  6.  68
    On Fairness and Claims.Patrick Tomlin - 2012 - Utilitas 24 (2):200-213.
    Perhaps the best-known theory of fairness is John Broome’s: that fairness is the proportional satisfaction of claims. In this article, I question whether claims are the appropriate focus for a theory of fairness, at least as Broome understands them in his current theory. If fairness is the proportionate satisfaction of claims, I argue, then the following would be true: fairness could not help determine the correct distribution of claims; fairness could not be used to evaluate the distribution of claims; fairness (...)
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  7.  46
    Retributivists! The Harm Principle Is Not for You!Patrick Tomlin - 2014 - Ethics 124 (2):272-298.
    Retributivism is often explicitly or implicitly assumed to be compatible with the harm principle, since the harm principle (in some guises) concerns the content of the criminal law, while retributivism concerns the punishment of those that break the law. In this essay I show that retributivism should not be endorsed alongside any version of the harm principle. In fact, retributivists should reject all attempts to see the criminal law only through (other) person-affecting concepts or “grievance” morality, since they should endorse (...)
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  8. Can I Be a Luck Egaliatarian and a Rawlsian?Patrick Tomlin - 2012 - Ethical Perspectives 19 (3):371-397.
    Rawls’s difference principle and the position dubbed ‘luck egalitarianism’ are often viewed as competing theories of distributive justice. However, recent work has emphasised that Rawlsians and luck egalitarians are working with different understandings of the concept of justice, and thus not only propose different theories, but different theories of different things. Once they are no longer seen in direct competition, there are some questions to be asked about whether these two theories can be consistently endorsed alongside one another. In this (...)
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  9.  19
    Should Kids Pay Their Own Way?Patrick Tomlin - 2015 - Political Studies.
    Children are expensive to raise. Ensuring that they are raised in such a way that they are able to lead a minimally decent life costs time and money, and lots of both. Who is responsible for bearing the costs of the things that children are undoubtedly owed? This is a question that has received comparatively little scrutiny from political philosophers,despite children being such a drain on public and private finances alike. To the extent that there is a debate, two main (...)
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  10. Envy, Facts and Justice: A Critique of the Treatment of Envy in Justice as Fairness.Patrick Tomlin - 2008 - Res Publica 14 (2):101-116.
    A common anti-egalitarian argument is that equality is motivated by envy, or the desire to placate envy. In order to avoid this charge, John Rawls explicitly banishes envy from his original position. This article argues that this is an inconsistent and untenable position for Rawls, as he treats envy as if it were a fact of human psychology and believes that principles of justice should be based on such facts. Therefore envy should be known about in the original position. The (...)
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  11.  84
    Survey Article: Internal Doubts About Cohen's Rescue of Justice.Patrick Tomlin - 2010 - Journal of Political Philosophy 18 (2):228-247.
  12.  17
    On Limited Aggregation.Patrick Tomlin - 2017 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 45 (3):232-260.
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  13.  33
    Should We Be Utopophobes About Democracy in Particular?Patrick Tomlin - 2012 - Political Studies Review 10 (1):36-47.
    In his book Democratic Authority, David Estlund puts forward a case for democracy, which he labels epistemic proceduralism, that relies on democracy's ability to produce good – that is, substantively just – results. Alongside this case for democracy Estlund attacks what he labels ‘utopophobia’, an aversion to idealistic political theory. In this article I make two points. The first is a general point about what the correct level of ‘idealisation’ is in political theory. Various debates are emerging on this question (...)
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  14.  5
    What is the Point of Egalitarian Social Relationships?Patrick Tomlin - 2014 - In Alexander Kaufman (ed.), Distributive Justice and Access to Advantage. Cambridge, U.K: Cambridge University Press. pp. 151-179.
    The subject matter of this essay is a certain understanding of the value of equality which I will call ‘relational egalitarianism’ – a view which locates the value of equality not in distributions but in social and political relationships. This is a suitable topic for a contribution to a volume based on themes from the work of G.A. Cohen for two, somewhat contradictory, reasons.
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    Survey Article: Internal Doubts About Cohen's Rescue of Justice.Patrick Tomlin - 2010 - Journal of Political Philosophy 18 (2):228-247.
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  16.  6
    Born Free and Equal? A Philosophical Inquiry Into the Nature of Discrimination, Written by Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen.Patrick Tomlin - 2017 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 14 (4):479-482.
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  17.  48
    And Nozick Begat Reagan?Patrick Tomlin - 2006 - The Philosophers' Magazine 33 (33):38-41.
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  18.  34
    Could the Presumption of Innocence Protect the Guilty?Patrick Tomlin - 2014 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 8 (2):431-447.
    At criminal trial, we demand that those accused of criminal wrongdoing be presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond any reasonable doubt. What are the moral and/or political grounds of this demand? One popular and natural answer to this question focuses on the moral badness or wrongness of convicting and punishing innocent persons, which I call the direct moral grounding. In this essay, I suggest that this direct moral grounding, if accepted, may well have important ramifications for other areas of the (...)
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  19.  16
    The Geometry of Desert.Patrick Tomlin - 2015 - Philosophical Review 124 (3):419-422.
  20.  22
    Time and Retribution.Patrick Tomlin - 2014 - Law and Philosophy 33 (5):655-682.
    Retributivists believe that punishment can be deserved, and that deserved punishment is intrinsically good or important. They also believe that certain crimes deserve certain quantities of punishment. On the plausible assumption that the overall amount of any given punishment is a function of its severity and duration, we might think that retributivists would be indifferent as to whether a punishment were long and light or short and sharp, provided the offender gets the overall amount of punishment he deserves. In this (...)
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  21.  5
    Innocence Lost: A Problem for Punishment as Duty.Patrick Tomlin - 2017 - Law and Philosophy 36 (3):225-254.
    Constrained instrumentalist theories of punishment – those that seek to justify punishment by its good effects, but limit its scope – are an attractive alternative to pure retributivism or utilitarianism. One way in which we may be able to limit the scope of instrumental punishment is by justifying punishment through the concept of duty. This strategy is most clearly pursued in Victor Tadros’ influential ‘Duty View’ of punishment. In this paper, I show that the Duty View as it stands cannot (...)
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    Should Retributivists Prefer Prepunishment?Patrick Tomlin - 2015 - Social Theory and Practice 41 (2):275-285.
    Some philosophers believe that we can, in theory, justifiably prepunish people—that is, punish them for a crime before they have committed that crime. In particular, it has been claimed that retributivists ought to accept prepunishment. The question of whether prepunishment can be justified has sparked an interesting and growing philosophical debate. In this paper I look at a slightly different question: whether retributivists who accept that prepunishment can be justified should prefer postpunishment or prepunishment, or see them as on a (...)
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  23.  1
    And Nozick Begat Reagan?Patrick Tomlin - 2006 - The Philosophers' Magazine 33:38-41.
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  24.  23
    Prevention and the Limits of the Criminal Law.Andrew Ashworth, Lucia Zedner & Patrick Tomlin (eds.) - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    Are preventive justice measures justified? Do they needlessly blur the boundaries between criminal and civil law, signalling a change in the architecture of security? The contributors in this volume re-assess the foundations for the range of coercive measures that states now take in the name of prevention and public protection.
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