Political Theory

Corporate Responsibility and Liberty


This purpose of this colloquium was to explore the justification, if any, for holding business organizations morally responsible, as corporate entities, for the actions of the human beings who comprise them.


Conference Readings

New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company v. United States, 57 212 U. S. 481  (Circuit Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York 1909).

United States v. Hilton Hotels Corporation, 467 F.2d 1000  (9th Circuit 1972).

Steere Tanklines, Inc. v. United States, 330 F.2d 719  (5th Circuit 1963).

United States v. Bank of New England, 821 F.2d 844  (1st Circuit 1987).

Alschuler, Albert W. "Two Ways to Think About the Punishment of Corporations." American Criminal Law Review 46 (2009): 1359-1382.

Bucy, Pamela. "Corporate Ethos: A Standard for Imposing Corporate Criminal Liability." Minnesota Law Review 75 (1991): 1099-1101, 1121-1128, 1146-1150.

Buell, Samuel W. "The Blaming Function of Entity Criminal Liability." Indiana Law Journal 81 (2006): 473-477, 491-494, 495-507, 516-522.

Cohen, Felix. "Transcendental Nonsense and the Functional Approach." Columbia Law Review 35 (June 1935): 809-814, 820-821.

Donaldson, Thomas. Corporations and Morality. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1982.

French, Peter. "The Corporation as a Moral Person." American Philosophical Quarterly 16, no. 3 (July 1979): 207-215.

Henning, Peter. "Corporate Criminal Liability and the Potential for Rehabilitation." American Criminal Law Review 46 (Fall 2009): 1421-1434.

Keating, Gregory C. "The Idea of Fairness in the Law of Enterprise Liability." Michigan Law Review 95 (1997): 1266-1273, 1349-1356.

May, Larry. "Vicarious Agency and Corporate Responsibility." Philosophical Studies 43 (January 1983): 69-82.

Pettit, Philip. "Responsibility Incorporated." Ethics 117 (2007): 171-175, 177-197.

Pollack, Barry J. "Time to Stop Living Vicariously: A Better Approach to Corporate Criminal Liability." American Criminal Law Review 46 (Fall, 2009): 1393-1415.

Seavey, Warren Abner, "Speculations as to "Respondeat Superior"." in Harvard Legal Essays in Honor of Joseph Henry Beale and Samuel Williston, edited by Roscoe Pound, 433-435, 445-451. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1934.

Smith, Young B. "Frolic and Detour." Columbia Law Review 23 (1923): 444, 452-463.

Sykes, Alan O. "The Economics of Vicarious Liability." Yale Law Journal 93 (1984): 1231-1259.

Velasquez, Manuel. "Debunking Corporate Moral Responsibility." Business Ethics Quarterly 13, no. 4 (2003): 531-551.