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18.9.2017 - 15.12.2017 - Výuka v zimním semestru 2017/2018

29.9.2017 - Děkanský den

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Nový paper Petera T. Leesona „Ordeals“

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Abstrakt:

For 400 years the most sophisticated persons in Europe decided difficult criminal cases by asking the defendant to thrust his arm into a cauldron of boiling water and …sh out a ring. If his arm was unharmed, he was exonerated. If not, he was convicted. Alternatively, a priest dunked the defendant in a pool. Sinking proved his innocence; oating proved his guilt. People called these trials ordeals. No one alive today believes ordeals were a good way to decide defendant’s guilt. But maybe they should. This paper investigates the law and economics of ordeals. I argue that ordeals accurately assigned accused criminals‘ guilt and innocence. They did this by leveraging a medieval superstition called iudicium Dei. According to this superstition, God condemned the guilty and exonerated the innocent through clergy conducted physical tests.

Celý text (pdf)