Doxastic responsibility

Synthese 155 (1):127 - 155 (2007)
Doxastic responsibility matters, morally and epistemologically. Morally, because many of our intuitive ascriptions of blame seem to track back to agents’ apparent responsibility for beliefs; epistemologically because some philosophers identify epistemic justification with deontological permissibility. But there is a powerful argument which seems to show that we are rarely or never responsible for our beliefs, because we cannot control them. I examine various possible responses to this argument, which aim to show either that doxastic responsibility does not require that we control our beliefs, or that as a matter of fact we do exercise the right kind of control over our beliefs. I argue that the existing arguments are all wanting: in fact, our lack of control over our beliefs typically excuses us of responsibility for them.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy   Epistemology   Logic   Metaphysics   Philosophy of Language
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DOI 10.2307/27653480
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References found in this work BETA
Thomas Scanlon (1998). What We Owe to Each Other. Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA
Marion Smiley (2014). Volitional Excuses, Self-Narration, and Blame. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 13:1-17.

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