Philosophical Foundations of Law and Neuroscience

According to a wide variety of scholars, scientists, and policymak-ers, neuroscience promises to transform law. Many neurolegalists—those championing the power of neuroscience for law—proceed from problematic premises regarding the relationship of mind to brain. In this Article, Professors Pardo and Patterson make the case that neurolegal-ists’ accounts of the nature of mind are implausible and that their conclusions are overblown. Thus, neurolegalists’ claims of the power of neuroscience for law cannot be sustained. The authors discuss a wide array of examples, including lie detection, criminal law doctrine, economic decision making, moral decision making, and jurisprudence.

The full text of this Article is available to download as a PDF.