The American death penalty must be abolished in order to establish a more just system of punishment. This thesis examines the arguments of eight political theorists and their connections with five essential Supreme Court cases on capital punishment in order to determine the Court's theoretical view of the American death penalty. This theoretical view is that justices who affirm the constitutionality of capital punishment use philosophical theories, while justices who critique capital punishment rely upon context-dependent analyses. If the Court ever rules that capital punishment is unconstitutional in all circumstances, these latter theories will be dispositive.
Sullivan, Rachel S., "Evolving Standards of Decency: The Intersection of Death Penalty Theory and Supreme Court Jurisprudence" (2016). Senior Independent Study Theses. Paper 7064.
Constitutional Law | Political Theory
Bachelor of Arts
Senior Independent Study Thesis Exemplar
© Copyright 2016 Rachel S. Sullivan