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Author Yaffe, Gideon, 1971- author

Title The age of culpability : children and the nature of criminal responsibility / Gideon Yaffe
Edition First edition
Published Oxford, United Kingdom ; New York, NY, United States of America : Oxford University Press, 2018
Online access available from:
Oxford Scholarship Online    View Resource Record  


Description 1 online resource (xii, 239 pages)
Contents Immaturity and reduced culpability -- Kids will be kids ... until they grow out of it -- Criminal culpability -- Desert for wrongdoing -- The weight of a legal reason -- Giving kids a break -- Who else is owed a break? -- What breaks are owed?
Summary "Why be lenient towards children who commit crimes? Reflection on the grounds for such leniency is the entry point into the development, in this book, of a theory of the nature of criminal responsibility and desert of punishment for crime. Gideon Yaffe argues that child criminals are owed lesser punishments than adults thanks not to their psychological, behavioural, or neural immaturity but, instead, because they are denied the vote. This conclusion is reached through accounts of the nature of criminal culpability, desert for wrongdoing, strength of legal reasons, and what it is to have a say over the law. The centrepiece of this discussion is the theory of criminal culpability. To be criminally culpable is for one's criminal act to manifest a failure to grant sufficient weight to the legal reasons to refrain. The stronger the legal reasons, then, the greater the criminal culpability. Those who lack a say over the law, it is argued, have weaker legal reasons to refrain from crime than those who have a say. They are therefore reduced in criminal culpability and deserve lesser punishment for their crimes. Children are owed leniency, then, because of the political meaning of age rather than because of its psychological meaning. This position has implications for criminal justice policy, with respect to, among other things, the interrogation of children suspected of crimes and the enfranchisement of adult felons."--Provided by the publisher
Gideon Yaffe presents a theory of criminal responsibility according to which child criminals deserve leniency not because of their psychological, behavioural, or neural immaturity but because they are denied the vote. He argues that full shares of criminal punishment are deserved only by those who have a full share of say over the law
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 223-229) and index
Notes Online resource; title from digital title page (EbscoHost platform, viewed April 5, 2019)
Subject Criminal liability
Guilt -- Philosophy
Juvenile delinquency -- Philosophy
Juvenile delinquency
Criminal liability.
Juvenile delinquency.
SOCIAL SCIENCE -- Criminology.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 019184151X
0192524933 (electronic bk.)
9780192524935 (electronic bk.)
Other Titles Children and the nature of criminal responsibility