[SydPhil] University of Sydney Postgraduate Colloquium Oct 29

Tama Coutts Iliketora at rocketmail.com
Sun Oct 28 13:33:29 AEDT 2012

Hey All,

The details for our final talk of semester two follow. All are welcome.

Ed Upfold


Roulette and Driving Blind: Not That Dangerous?
Crabbe, Lamb and Lavender: A Recipe
Faure Disaster (I genuinely apologise for the shoehorning of Faure in

includes not only deliberate killings but those performed with mere
"reckless indifference to human life". Often this mental
state is inferred or constructed from a finding that the act in
question was "dangerous", something that the courts,
correctly, see as a probabilistic concept. Unfortunately there's very
little in the way of useful explanation in the canon, and what does
exist seems hopelessly confused, particularly regarding the
mathematical character of probability judgements.

By examining
two pairs of cases in similar areas - two involving partly-loaded
revolvers, two involving driving into things that shouldn't be driven
into, I suggest that this confusion could be explained with reference
to the legal ideal of moral responsibility, which is being used as an
intuition pump to make judgements of "probability" line up
with the needs of the court, and to allow participants in the legal
process to switch implicitly between objective and subjective
accounts of probability while claiming to endorse a single theory.

3pm, Mon Oct 29

Philosophy common-room, quadrangle building, University of Sydney
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