How changes in one's preferences can affect one's freedom (and how they cannot): A reply to dowding and Van hees

Economics and Philosophy 24 (1):81-96 (2008)
How is a person's freedom related to his or her preferences? Liberal theorists of negative freedom have generally taken the view that the desire of a person to do or not do something is irrelevant to the question of whether he is free to do it. Supporters of the “pure negative” conception of freedom have advocated this view in its starkest form: they maintain that a person is unfree to Φ if and only if he is prevented from Φ-ing by the conduct or dispositions of some other person . This definition of freedom is value-neutral in the sense that no reference is made to preferences over options or indeed to any other indicators of the values of options, either in the characterization of “Φ-ing” itself or in the characterization of the way in which Φ-ing can be constrained
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DOI 10.1017/S0266267108001685
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