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Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832)

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Rachel Dunford

on 6 March 2014

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Transcript of Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832)

Thank You!
Early Life
- Born in Houndsditch, London in 1748
- He was an English philospoher and economist
- Attended Oxford at the age of 12, graduated at 15
- Dedicated his life to reconstructing the English institutions
- Died June 6, 1832 at the age of 84
Contributions to the Legal System
- Bentham dismissed all natural law
- His ideas came to be the theory of "utilitarianism"
- He saw law as nothing more than a means of social control
- Utilitarianism is the belief than an action is right if it produces the "greatest good for the most number of people"
- Based on the ends justifying the means (the outcome of a certain action)
- Bentham's writings emphasized the pursuit of happiness and freedom
- Bentham had a wide spread commitment to different areas of concern
- Unfortunately, this meant he never finished any of his works

- Bentham's major contribution to international law provided the legal foundation for:
The League of Nations
The United Nations and
The United Nations International Courts at The Hague
which nations today can now go to court, not war
- Bentham helped found the University College of London
- He left his body to their department of medicine where his skeleton, dressed in his own suit, sits today

Jeremy Bentham (1748-1832)
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