Truth, Error, and Criminal Law: An Essay in Legal Epistemology

Truth, Error, and Criminal Law: An Essay in Legal Epistemology

by Larry Laudan
     
 

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ISBN-10: 052173035X

ISBN-13: 9780521730358

Pub. Date: 04/28/2008

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

This book treats problems in the epistemology of the law. Beginning with the premise that the principal function of a criminal trial is to find out the truth about a crime, Larry Laudan examines the rules of evidence and procedure that would be appropriate if the discovery of the truth were, as higher courts routinely claim, the overriding aim of the criminal

Overview

This book treats problems in the epistemology of the law. Beginning with the premise that the principal function of a criminal trial is to find out the truth about a crime, Larry Laudan examines the rules of evidence and procedure that would be appropriate if the discovery of the truth were, as higher courts routinely claim, the overriding aim of the criminal justice system. Laudan mounts a systematic critique of existing rules and procedures that are obstacles to that quest. He also examines issues of error distribution by offering the first integrated analysis of the various mechanisms—the standard of proof, the benefit of the doubt, the presumption of innocence and the burden of proof—for implementing society’s view about the relative importance of the errors that can occur in a trial.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521730358
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
04/28/2008
Series:
Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Law Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
1,105,367
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

1. Thinking about error in the law; 2. The unraveling of reasonable doubt; 3. Fixing the standard of proof; 4. Innocence, the burden of proof, and the puzzle of affirmative defenses; 5. Evaluating evidence and procedures; 6. Silent defendants, silent witnesses, and lobotomized jurors; 7. Confessions, poison fruit, and other exclusions; 8. Double jeopardy and false acquittals: letting felons and judges off the hook?; 9. Dubious motives for flawed rules: the clash between values.

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