This volume of Scandinavian Studies in Law (Sc.St.L.) addresses criminal law. The volume comprises 21 articles and is divided into five sections. In addition to the introduction the discussions concern responsibility, specific offences, sanctions, and international issues.
Criminal law is a core element of the legal system. The topic also attracts much interest from politicians and the public in general. Spectacular crimes, sentencing and the rationality of the criminal system are intensely observed and extensively discussed in the media. Undoubtedly criminal law sometimes also functions as a survival tool for politicians, as demands for more harsh treatments and harder punishments always tend to (or at least tend to be expected to) attract large groups of voters. Criminal law is as well a theoretical field of law, in the sense that many of its issues cannot be discussed and “solved” without use of knowledge from other disciplines, such as philosophy, psychology and sociology. The “general part” of criminal law – the idea of which is prominent in the Scandinavian countries – must, when handling issues such as causality, action and intent, stay open to such influences. Consequently, criminal law is a multifaceted and important field of study undergoing constant change. Against this background the editors of Sc.St.L. are pleased to present a collection with a large number of contributions on several aspects of criminal law currently being debated on the international scene.