Punishment is usually regarded as the fitting response to crime. But what is the justification for punishment? One view is that punishment produces the best consequences in reducing crime without too great costs. A rival view is that the wrongdoing of the offender deserves punishment, whether or not punishment is effective in reducing crime. This module critically discusses different justifications for punishment and related issues about the appropriate amount of punishment for a particular crime, the rationale for excusing some offenders, such as those who are mentally ill, from punishment, and the alternatives to punishment as responses to crime.