CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Monday, December 4, 2017

Donnelly-Lazarov on Intention

Bebhinn Donnelly‐Lazarov (University of Surrey - Faculty of Management & Law) has posted an abstract of Intention in Criminal Law: The Challenge from Non‐Observational Knowledge (Ratio Juris, Vol. 30, Issue 4, pp. 451-470, 2017) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:
Intention is at the heart of criminal law. If it is not the mens rea requirement found most often in offences, it is still the standard against which other grades of fault tend relatively to be judged. It has generated much controversy, as the crucial question, "Did the defendant intend X?" is resistant to clear answers. This paper argues that intention‐questions are difficult because intention is not the thing law takes it to be: Importantly, contrary to law's assumptions, it is neither a state of mind nor is it connected in an exclusive manner to the reasons for which we act.

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