Schroeder, Alexander J. “Kant's Retribution”, Boston College, 2022. http://hdl.handle.net/2345/bc-ir:109365.
In On the right to punish and grant clemency, Immanuel Kant attempts to resolve a potential paradox in social contract theory. The government is the political authority tasked with execution of the rule of law. On the one hand, the execution of the rule of law is consensual and meant to serve the individual citizen. On the other hand, the execution of the rule of law requires punishment (a nonconsensual action). A consensual condition requires a nonconsensual component. This thesis analyzes Kant’s attempt to resolve this issue through his use of a retributivist framework of punishment.