[SydPhil] Macquarie Philosophy WiP Seminar on Tuesday 31 October 2023 – Dr Mary Walker (La Trobe University)

FoA Philosophy Seminars foa.philseminars at mq.edu.au
Wed Oct 25 09:14:29 AEDT 2023

Dear all,

You are invited to attend the next Macquarie Philosophy Work-in-Progress Seminar on Tuesday 31 October 2023 from 1:00 to 2:00pm.

Attend in-person at 25B Wally's Walk, Room B603.
Attend online: https://protect-au.mimecast.com/s/q36PCr81nytrPPAx8f7bMHx?domain=macquarie.zoom.us
Password: seminar

Speaker: Dr Mary Walker (La Trobe University) – joint work with Daniel Cohen (CSU)

Title: Is veritas really in vino? Intoxication as increasing blameworthiness

Abstract: Intoxication is treated inconsistently in Australian law. Currently there have been trends against regarding intoxication as a mitigating factor and toward treating it as aggravating. This poses a challenge to philosophical theories of responsibility, given that intoxication impairs many of the capacities often thought to be required for moral responsibility. In this paper we examine two rationales for regarding intoxication as increasing blameworthiness. The first is derived from regarding responsibility as attributability and the second is including a tracing principle in our theory of responsibility. We argue that while these rationales explain some cases in which our intuitions favour holding an intoxicated offender responsible, they do not explain all such cases. We then suggest that combining the two rationales could provide a justification for regarding intoxication as increasing blameworthiness, but that this justification would apply in only some cases of intoxicated offending. Therefore, we argue, legal practices which recommend judges treat intoxication as an aggravating factor at sentencing are likely to capture more cases than those in which the offender is more culpable. Furthermore, the cases where increased blame is appropriate are cases where aggravation from intoxication is likely to be superfluous.

For any queries about the Macquarie Philosophy Work-in-Progress Seminars, please contact foa.philseminars at mq.edu.au<mailto:foa.philseminars at mq.edu.au>.

Best regards,


Dr Regina Fabry (she/her)
ARC Discovery Early Career Research Awardee
Department of Philosophy
Level 7, 25B Wally’s Walk
Macquarie University, NSW 2109, Australia
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