2.36 Crime and Punishment

Category: Ethics/Social and Political

Keywords: forgiveness, crime, criminal, punishment, punish, court, guilty, legal, hart, liability, guilt, dworkin, judges, supreme, trial

Number of Articles: 384
Percentage of Total: 1.2%
Rank: 37th

Weighted Number of Articles: 252.3
Percentage of Total: 0.8%
Rank: 66th

Mean Publication Year: 1973.8
Weighted Mean Publication Year: 1974.3
Median Publication Year: 1973
Modal Publication Year: 1974

Topic with Most Overlap: Ordinary Language (0.0565)
Topic this Overlaps Most With: War (0.0192)
Topic with Least Overlap: Space and Time (3e-04)
Topic this Overlaps Least With: Wide Content (5e-05)

Crime and Punishment

Figure 2.86: Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment Articles in Each Journal

Figure 2.87: Crime and Punishment Articles in Each Journal


The bulk of this topic is issues about punishment. And it’s striking just how little coverage this gets in the ‘generalist’ journals. This particular gap wasn’t the reason that I included Ethics and Philosophy and Public Affairs in the study, but it would have done just as well as a reason. Punishment is a really important philosophical topic, and most philosophy journals simply don’t talk about it.

This topic also picks up some recent topics that are not, or at least not entirely, about laws and institutions. Instead they are about the role of mercy and forgiveness in personal interactions. These were best classed as ethics papers rather than social and political papers. A binary sort was able to find these papers as a separate category, so I was able to sort those papers into ethics. But the vast bulk of the papers are about legal punishment (and legal forgiveness and legal mercy), and those are put into social and political.