Gideon Yaffe appointed the Hohfeld Professor of Jurisprudence

Law professor Gideon Yaffe
Gideon Yaffe

Gideon Daniel Yaffe, the newly named Wesley Newcomb Hohfeld Professor of Jurisprudence, conducts research in the philosophy of law, particularly criminal law; the study of metaphysics including causation, free will, and personal identity; and the study of intention and the theory of action. 

Yaffe has also written about the history of early modern philosophy. He collaborates with several neuroscientists to devise experiments that aim to be of legal and philosophical significance, and has written about the relevance of the neuroscience of addiction to the criminal culpability of addicts.

Yaffe’s 2010 book “Attempts” concerns the philosophical foundations of the law governing attempted crimes. His 2018 book “The Age of Culpability” focuses on the philosophical grounds for leniency towards child criminals. His other books include “Manifest Activity: Thomas Reid’s Theory of Action” and “Liberty Worth the Name: Locke on Free Agency.” Yaffe is a widely published author of articles, reviews, columns, commentaries, and encyclopedia entries. He serves on the editorial boards of Philosophy Compass, Southern Journal of Philosophy, Legal Theory, and Law and Philosophy.

A graduate of Harvard University, Yaffe earned his Ph.D. in philosophy from Stanford University. Prior to joining Yale in 2012, he was a professor of philosophy and law at the University of Southern California. He was also a member of the MacArthur Foundation’s Law and Neuroscience Project. He is the recipient of fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies and the Mellon Foundation. In 2015, he was named a Guggenheim Fellow. In 2019-20, he will be a fellow at Stanford’s Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.

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