Humean Causation and Crime Theory

  • Jason Warr


This chapter explores the relevance of Hume’s analysis and critique of causal explanation to the field of criminological theory. This formulation of causal reasoning, based on an ‘if x then y’ construction, is known as the Humean regularity, or chain, model of causation. It is argued here that this form of reasoning has been implicitly employed throughout the history of the social and criminological sciences. Utilising, and introducing the reader to, an adapted form of symbolic logic this chapter explores, in some depth, the technical and formal structure of the Humean model of causation. Finally, by employing a somewhat simplified example of an imagined Control theory, I show how this model works in terms of the structuring and creation of criminological theory.


Causation Control Hume Logic Regularity Theory 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jason Warr
    • 1
  1. 1.University of LincolnLincolnUnited Kingdom

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