One of the most important trends in our current legal system is the paradigm shift in the approach to controlling harmful conduct—the state is moving away from its traditional reliance on deterrence and retribution (or compensation) through punishment (or civil liability) and toward more proactive approaches to harm prevention, with wide-ranging consequences in a variety of fields, including civil liberties, human rights, criminal justice, national security, foreign policy, and international law. In all of these areas, the goal of harm prevention increasingly informs actions our society may take to control dangerous human behavior. Thus, the legal and moral question of how far the state may go in order to prevent the occurrence of harm is ever-pressing. In this Workshop, we will attempt a critical study a series of preventive practices that have characterized modern American criminal law, ranging from the censorship and prior restraint of speech, to preventive detention and racial profiling, with the goal of identifying any common principles or characteristics that may help us sketch a jurisprudence of prevention and preemption in the criminal law.
This workshop has no pre-requisites and is open to all students.
For more information and workshop materials, visit: https://canvas.harvard.edu/courses/7836.