Impulse and self-reflection: Frankfurtian responsibility versus free will [Book Review]

Journal of Ethics 3 (4):325-341 (1999)
Harry Frankfurt''s early work makes an important distinction between moral responsibility and free will. Frankfurt begins by focusing on the notion of responsibility, as supplying counterexamples to the principle of alternative possibilities; he then turns to an apparently independent account of free will, in terms of his well-known hierarchy of desires. But the two notions seem to reestablish contact in Frankfurt''s later discussion of issues and cases. The present article sets up a putative Frankfurtian account of moral responsibility that involves the potential for free will, as suggested by some of Frankfurt''s later remarks about taking responsibility. While correcting what seem to be some common misinterpretations of Frankfurt''s view, the article attempts to extract some reasons for dissatisfaction with it from consideration of cases of unfreedom, particularly cases involving addiction.
Keywords action  addiction  desire  Frankfurt  freedom  free will  moral responsibility  self
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DOI 10.1023/A:1009867501644
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