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Institute of Criminology


The Centre for Penal Theory and Penal Ethics is a research centre within the Institute, working to highlight ethical issues within criminology. Its recently-published edited book, Penal Censure, takes up issues in punishment theory that were first opened up in a 1976 book (Doing Justice) by the founder of the Centre, Professor Andreas von Hirsch, and in von Hirsch’s subsequent grounding of his proposed model of desert-based sentencing in the notion of penal censure. What, if any, kind of censure-based justification of punishment would fully satisfy the penal theorist? And, just as importantly, what are the dangers and costs of a conceptualisation of state punishment as deserved censure in a world without agreement on what our most fundamental values are?

penalcensure book cover


Please join Matt Matravers, Professor of Law and Philosophy at the University of York, and Christopher Bennett, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Sheffield, two of the authors in the edited collection on Penal Censure, for a critical exploration of some of these questions.  They will participate in a panel discussion chaired by Dr Antje du Bois-Pedain, Deputy Director of the Centre for Penal Theory and Penal Ethics, and one of the book’s editors.

The volume will be launched on this occasion, and copies will be available for purchase at a discounted price.


This event is open to all interested in attending, with no ticket required

Institute of Criminology, Sidgwick Ave, Cambridge, CB3 9DA

Please be aware the Seminars are often recorded and can be found on the Institute website

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 For full listing of IoC Seminars:

Thursday, 9 May, 2019 - 17:30 to 19:00
Contact email: 
Event location: 
B3, Institute of Criminology