#436 Gregg Caruso: Just Deserts, and Rejecting Retributivism
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Dr. Gregg D. Caruso is Professor of Philosophy at SUNY Corning and Honorary Professor of Philosophy at Macquarie University. He is also the Co-Director of the Justice Without Retribution Network (JWRN) at the University of Aberdeen School of Law. His research interests include free will, agency, and responsibility (both moral and legal), as well as philosophy of mind, cognitive science, neuroethics, moral psychology, criminal law, punishment, and public policy. His books include Rejecting Retributivism: Free Will, Punishment, and Criminal Justice (2021), Just Deserts: Debating Free Will (w/Daniel C. Dennett) (2021).
In this episode, we focus on the two books: Just Deserts, and Rejecting Retributivism. First, we give an overview of the philosophical positions on free will, with a focus on incompatibilism, and we talk about luck. We discuss degrees of free will. We then talk about the link between free will and morality; praise and blame; if people need to believe in free will to be moral; how our legal and penal systems work, and how they should change; if we need to punish wrongdoers. Finally, we go through a lengthy discussion about how a new system could replace the penal systems based on retributivism, and we ask if we should nudge people.
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