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Summary This category collects papers and books that discuss theories of free will that do not fit easily into the standard categories of libertarian, hard determinist, skeptical and (semi) compatibilist taxonomies. 
Key works Given the dominance of the major theories mentioned above, there are no key works in this category (many key works belong also to this category, but they are not key works qua members of this category).
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283 found
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1 — 50 / 283
  1. Man as Trinity of Body, Spirit, and Soul.Marcoen J. T. F. Cabbolet - manuscript
    Although there are several monistic and dualistic approaches to the mind-body problem on the basis of classical or quantum mechanics, thus far no consensus exists about a solution. Recently, the Elementary Process Theory (EPT) has been developed: this corresponds with a fundamentally new disciplinary matrix for the study of physical reality. The purpose of the present research was to investigate the mind-body problem within this newly developed disciplinary matrix. The main finding is that the idea of a duality of body (...)
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  2. Manipulating Responsibility.Matt King - manuscript
    Manipulation arguments have become almost a cottage industry in the moral responsibility literature. These cases are used for a variety of purposes, familiarly to undermine some proffered set of conditions on responsibility, usually compatibilist conditions. The basic idea is to conceive of a case which intuitively includes responsibility-undermining manipulation but which meets the target account’s set of sufficient conditions on responsibility. The manipulation thereby serves as a counterexample to the target theory. More specifically, recent concern with manipulation cases has often (...)
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  3. Mind-Body problemets olösbarhet frigör viljan.Jan Scheffel - manuscript
    Mind-body problemet analyseras i ett reduktionistiskt perspektiv. Genom att kombinera emergensbegreppet med algoritmisk informationsteori visas i ett tankeexperiment att ett starkt epistemiskt emergent system kan konstrueras utifrån en relativt enkel, ickelinjär process. En jämförelse med hjärnans avsevärt mer komplexa neurala nätverk visar att även medvetandet kan karakteriseras som starkt epistemiskt emergent. Därmed är reduktionistisk förståelse av medvetandet inte möjlig; mind-body problemet har alltså inte en reduktionistisk lösning. Medvetandets ontologiskt emergenta karaktär kan därefter konstateras utifrån en kombinatorisk analys; det är därmed (...)
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  4. What If Every Subconscious Brain Module is Really an Independent Consciousness?Robert Vermeulen - manuscript
    What if subconscious brain processes are actually independent consciousnesses, each resembling an independent advisor whispering advice to the main consciousness, or “I”? This multi-consciousness model would support free will, as our choices are informed by other consciousnesses, not the subconscious. Each independent consciousness allows a movable perspective through its rich representation of the world and constantly seeks harmony and resonance between its internal concepts, other consciousnesses, external reality, and the genetic worm hole to the evolutionary past.
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  5. Free Will Free Choice Under Constraints.Chaohui Zhuang - manuscript
    The problem of Free Will is an important topic in religion, philosophy and neuroscience. We will introduce a new model of free will: free choice under constraints. Under outer and inner constraints, human still have the ability of free choice. Outer constrains include physical rules, environment and so on. Inner constrains include customs, desires, habits, preferences and so on. Given a specific context, human have the ability of deciding Yes/No on a specific preference. The free choices are caused, but not (...)
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  6. Free Will, Fundamental Dualism, and the Centrality of Illusion.Saul Smilanksy - manuscript
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  7. Effects, Determinism, Neither Compatibilism nor Incompatibilism, Consciousness.Ted Honderich - forthcoming - Philosophical Explorations.
    Since the rise of the theory of determinism, philosophers have argued and declared that we are diminished by it. Bishop Bramhall against Thomas Hobbes in the 17th Century, Kant against Hume in the 18th, F. H. Bradley against John Stuart Mill in the 19th, Robert Kane and Robert Nozick against such as me in the 20th Century. There must be something in this relentless tradition. It cannot, it seems to me, be the falsehood of determinism. Is it, so to speak, (...)
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  8. When Do Robots Have Free Will? Exploring the Relationships Between (Attributions of) Consciousness and Free Will.Eddy Nahmias, Corey Allen & Bradley Loveall - forthcoming - In Marcus Missal & Andrew Cameron Sims Feltz (eds.), Free Will, Causality, and Neuroscience. Brill.
    While philosophers and scientists sometimes suggest (or take for granted) that consciousness is an essential condition for free will and moral responsibility, there is surprisingly little discussion of why consciousness (and what sorts of conscious experience) is important. We discuss some of the proposals that have been offered. We then discuss our studies using descriptions of humanoid robots to explore people’s attributions of free will and responsibility, of various kinds of conscious sensations and emotions, and of reasoning capacities, and examine (...)
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  9. Situationism and Moral Responsibility: Free Will in Fragments.Manuel Vargas - forthcoming - In Tillman Vierkant, Julian Kiverstein & Andy Clark (eds.), Decomposing the Will. Oxford Up.
    Many prominent accounts of free will and moral responsibility make use of the idea that agents can be responsive to reasons. Call such theories Reasons accounts. In what follows, I consider the tenability of Reasons accounts in light of situationist social psychology and, to a lesser extent, the automaticity literature. In the first half of this chapter, I argue that Reasons accounts are genuinely threatened by contemporary psychology. In the second half of the paper I consider whether such threats can (...)
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  10. Predestinación y libertad. Escritos en torno a la controversia de auxiliis.Domingo Báñez & David Torrijos-Castrillejo - 2021 - Pamplona: EUNSA.
    Edition of the opuscules by D. Báñez on De auxiliis controversy. There is the critical edition of three manuscripts and the first Spanish annotated translation of the opuscules. The Latin text is disposed together with the translation. An introduction situates the opuscules in its systematic and historical context.
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  11. The Value of Perception.Keith Allen - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (3):633-656.
  12. Free Will as a Higher‐Level Phenomenon?Alexander Gebharter - 2020 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 9 (3):177-187.
    List (2014, 2019) has recently argued for a particular view of free will as a higher-level phenomenon compatible with determinism. According to List, one could refute his account by showing that determinism at the physical level implies the impossibility of doing otherwise at the agential level. This paper takes up that challenge. Based on assumptions to which List’s approach is committed, I provide a simple probabilistic model that establishes the connection between physical determinism and the impossibility of doing otherwise at (...)
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  13. Précis Zu: Agents' Abilities.Romy Jaster - 2020 - Zeitschrift für Philosophische Forschung 74 (3):443-447.
  14. Time, Leeway, and the Laws of Nature: Why Humean Compatibilists Cannot Be Eternalists.Andrei A. Buckareff - 2019 - Metaphysica 20 (1):51-71.
    Humean compatibilism combines a Humean conception of laws of nature with a strong dual-ability condition for free will that requires that agents possess the ability to decide differently when they make a free decision. On the Humean view of laws of nature, laws of nature are taken to be contingent non-governing descriptions of significant regularities that obtain in the entire history of the universe. On Humean compatibilism, agents are taken to possess dual ability when making free decisions because what the (...)
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  15. The Libertarian Predicament: A Plea for Action Theory.Niels Miltenburg & Dawa Ometto - 2019 - Synthese 196 (1):161-178.
    Libertarians in the contemporary free will debate find themselves under attack from two angles. They face the challenge of defending the necessity of indeterminism for freedom against the philosophical mainstream position of compatibilism. And second, they are increasingly forced to argue for the very possibility of indeterministic free will, in the face of the so-called luck objection. Many contemporary libertarians try to overcome the second problem by adopting the causal theory of action. We argue that this move at the same (...)
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  16. Blaming the Buddha: Buddhism and Moral Responsibility.Bobby Bingle - 2018 - Sophia 57 (2):295-311.
    This paper answers the question ‘what does Buddhism say about free will?’ I begin by investigating Charles Goodman’s influential answer, according to which Buddhists reject getting angry at wrongdoers because they believe that people are not morally responsible. Despite putative evidence to the contrary, Goodman’s interpretation of Buddhism is problematic on three counts: Buddhist texts do not actually support rejection of moral responsibility; Goodman’s argument has the unwanted upshot of undermining positive attitudes like compassion, which Buddhism unambiguously endorses; and his (...)
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  17. Just Deserts: Can We Be Held Morally Responsible for Our Actions? Yes, Says Daniel Dennett. No, Says Gregg Caruso.Gregg D. Caruso & Daniel C. Dennett - 2018 - Aeon 1 (Oct. 4):1-20.
    Can we be held morally responsible for our actions? Yes, says Daniel Dennett. No, says Gregg Caruso. Reader, you decide.
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  18. A Critique of Alfred R Mele’s Work on Autonomous Agents: From Self-Control to Autonomy: Oxford University Press, New York, 1995. [REVIEW]Pujarini Das - 2018 - Journal of the Indian Council of Philosophical Research 35 (3):603-617.
  19. Explaining Free Will.Michael Elstob - 2018 - Chesham, UK: C. M. Elstob. Printed and distributed by Amazon.
    A new approach using independence indeterminism, a novel naturalistic metaphysics for an open creative universe. -/- The problem of free will - what exactly it is, whether it is required for us to be morally responsible for our actions, and whether any natural being can possibly possess it - has remained unresolved for over 2000 years. -/- Now, starting from the very widely held belief that most change takes place in a way that is independent of how most other change (...)
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  20. Free Will & Action: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives.Filip Grgić & Davor Pećnjak (eds.) - 2018 - Switzerland: Springer.
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  21. A Deterministic Model of the Free Will Phenomenon.Mark Hadley - 2018 - Journal of Consciousness Exploration and Research 8 (1):1-19.
    The abstract concept of indeterministic free will is distinguished from the phenomenon of free will. Evidence for the abstract concept is examined and critically compared with various designs of automata. It is concluded that there is no evidence to support the abstract concept of indeterministic free will, it is inconceivable that a test could be constructed to distinguish an indeterministic agent from a complicated automaton. Testing the free will of an alien visitor is introduced to separate prejudices about who has (...)
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  22. Free will, science and causes of behavior.Sergei M. Levin - 2018 - Epistemology and Philosophy of Science 55 (2):153-164.
    Some scientists and philosophers, based on scientific discoveries and empirical evidence, argue that free will does not exist. Some authors defend the opposite opinion. The universality of their reasoning unites opponents. They seek to correlate scientific knowledge with the entire sum of human actions and, consequently justify the existence of freedom of will or its absence. In the paper, I propose to narrow the focus of the issue to the study of the degree of freedom of individual actions or certain (...)
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  23. Libertà del volere – dalla filosofia teoretica alla filosofia pratica. Un dialogo con Sandro Nannini.Christoph Lumer - 2018 - In Christoph Lumer & Giacomo Romano (eds.), Dalla filosofia dell’azione alla filosofia della mente. Riflessioni in onore di Sandro Nannini. Messina, Italy: corisco. pp. 53-84.
    The article, first, reconstructs and criticizes Sandro Nannini’s incompatibilistic concept of freedom of decision and, second, develops a compatibilistic alternative, a synthesis of a rationalistic and an autonomous approach. Nannini justifies his conception primarily from a naturalistic point of view: it reflects our sense of agency, so he says. This is criticized as empirically wrong and methodically mistaken: The theory of freedom of decision is, actually, normative; it is about good decisions; naturalism cannot establish normative claims. The alternative is based, (...)
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  24. Hard-Incompatibilist Existentialism: Neuroscience, Punishment, and Meaning in Life.Derk Pereboom & Gregg D. Caruso - 2018 - In Gregg D. Caruso & Owen Flanagan (eds.), Neuroexistentialism: Meaning, Morals, and Purpose in the Age of Neuroscience. Oxford University Press.
    As philosophical and scientific arguments for free will skepticism continue to gain traction, we are likely to see a fundamental shift in the way people think about free will and moral responsibility. Such shifts raise important practical and existential concerns: What if we came to disbelieve in free will? What would this mean for our interpersonal relationships, society, morality, meaning, and the law? What would it do to our standing as human beings? Would it cause nihilism and despair as some (...)
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  25. Historical Moral Responsibility: Is The Infinite Regress Problem Fatal?Eric Christian Barnes - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (4):533-554.
    Some compatibilists have responded to the manipulation argument for incompatibilism by proposing an historical theory of moral responsibility which, according to one version, requires that agents be morally responsible for having their pro-attitudes if they are to be morally responsible for acting on them. This proposal, however, leads obviously to an infinite regress problem. I consider a proposal by Haji and Cuypers that addresses this problem and argue that it is unsatisfactory. I then go on to propose a new solution (...)
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  26. Free Will, Agent Causation, and “Disappearing Agents”.Randolph Clarke - 2017 - Noûs:76-96.
    A growing number of philosophers now hold that agent causation is required for agency, or free will, or moral responsibility. To clarify what is at issue, this paper begins with a distinction between agent causation that is ontologically fundamental and agent causation that is reducible to or realized in causation by events or states. It is widely accepted that agency presents us with the latter; the view in question claims a need for the former. The paper then examines a “disappearing (...)
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  27. Education and the Free Will Problem: A Spinozist Contribution.Johan Dahlbeck - 2017 - Journal of Philosophy of Education 51 (4):725-743.
    In this Spinozist defence of the educational promotion of students’ autonomy I argue for a deterministic position where freedom of will is deemed unrealistic in the metaphysical sense, but important in the sense that it is an undeniable psychological fact. The paper is structured in three parts. The first part investigates the concept of autonomy from different philosophical points of view, looking especially at how education and autonomy intersect. The second part focuses on explicating the philosophical position of causal determinism (...)
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  28. Aquinas on Free Will and Intellectual Determinism.Tobias Hoffmann & Cyrille Michon - 2017 - Philosophers' Imprint 17.
    From the early reception of Thomas Aquinas up to the present, many have interpreted his theory of liberum arbitrium to imply intellectual determinism: we do not control our choices, because we do not control the practical judgments that cause our choices. In this paper we argue instead that he rejects determinism in general and intellectual determinism in particular, which would effectively destroy liberum arbitrium as he conceives of it. We clarify that for Aquinas moral responsibility presupposes liberum arbitrium and thus (...)
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  29. Two Libertarian Theories: Or Why Event-Causal Libertarians Should Prefer My Daring Libertarian View to Robert Kane's View.Alfred R. Mele - 2017 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 80:49-68.
    Libertarianism about free will is the conjunction of two theses: the existence of free will is incompatible with the truth of determinism, and at least some human beings sometimes exercise free will (or act freely, for short). 1 Some libertarian views feature agent causation, others maintain that free actions are uncaused, and yet others – event-causal libertarian views – reject all views of these two kinds and appeal to indeterministic causation by events and states. 2 This article explores the relative (...)
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  30. An Early Theory of Contingency in Leibniz.Samuel Murray - 2017 - Studia Leibnitiana 47 (2):205-219.
    My discussion has four parts. In section 1, I reconstruct Leibniz’s early position on freedom and show how various problems motivated significant changes in Leibniz’s views over a short period of time. In section two, I outline a series of notes by Leibniz entitled “De Libertate a Necessitate in Eligendo,” where Leibniz develops a rudimentary theory of contingency that resembles the infinite analysis theory developed around 1686. In section three, I consider some reasons for why Leibniz dropped the “Eligendo” view. (...)
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  31. Three Vedāntas: Three Accounts of Character, Freedom and Responsibility.Shyam Ranganathan - 2017 - In The Bloomsbury Research Handbook of Indian Ethics. London: Bloomsbury Academic. pp. 249-274.
    Indian thought is often said to be concerned with ethics (dharma) that leads to freedom (mokṣa). Either this means that we should treat freedom as the end that justifies the ethical life (Consequentialism), or that the ethical life is the procedure that causes freedom (Proceduralism). The history of Vedānta philosophy—philosophy of the latter part of the Vedas—largely endorses the latter option via the “moral transition argument” (MTA): a dialectic that takes us from teleology to proceduralism. It is motivated by a (...)
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  32. Free Will Pessimism.Paul Russell - 2017 - In David Shoemaker (ed.), Oxford Studies in Agency and Responsibility, Volume 4. New York, NY, USA: pp. 93-120..
    The immediate aim of this paper is to articulate the essential features of an alternative compatibilist position, one that is responsive to sources of resistance to the compatibilist program based on considerations of fate and luck. The approach taken relies on distinguishing carefully between issues of skepticism and pessimism as they arise in this context. A compatibilism that is properly responsive to concerns about fate and luck is committed to what I describe as free will pessimism, which is to be (...)
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  33. Reasons, Causes, and Chance-Incompatibilism.Markus Schlosser - 2017 - Philosophia 45 (1):335–347.
    Libertarianism appears to be incoherent, because free will appears to be incompatible with indeterminism. In support of this claim, van Inwagen offered an argument that is now known as the “rollback argument”. In a recent reply, Lara Buchak has argued that the underlying thought experiment fails to support the first of two key premises. On her view, this points to an unexplored alternative in the free will debate, which she calls “chance-incompatibilism”. I will argue that the rollback thought experiment does (...)
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  34. Routledge Companion to Free Will.Kevin Timpe, Meghan Griffith & Neil Levy (eds.) - 2017 - New York: Routledge.
    Questions concerning free will are intertwined with issues in almost every area of philosophy, from metaphysics to philosophy of mind to moral philosophy, and are also informed by work in different areas of science. Free will is also a perennial concern of serious thinkers in theology and in non-western traditions. Because free will can be approached from so many different perspectives and has implications for so many debates, a comprehensive survey needs to encompass an enormous range of approaches. This book (...)
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  35. Joseph Albo on Free Choice: Exegetical Innovation in Medieval Jewish Philosophy.Shira Weiss - 2017 - New York, USA: Oxford University Press.
    Scripture is replete with narratives that challenge a variety of philosophical concepts; including morality, divine benevolence, and human freedom. Free choice, a significant and much debated concept in medieval philosophy, continues to be of great interest to contemporary philosophers and others. However, scholarship in biblical studies has primarily focused on compositional history, philology, and literary analysis, not on the examination of the philosophy implied in biblical texts. In this book, Shira Weiss focuses on the Hebrew Bible's encounter with the philosophical (...)
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  36. Chinese Perspectives on Free Will.Christian Helmut Wenzel & Marchal Kai - 2017 - In Kevin Timpe, Meghan Griffith & Neil Levy (eds.), Routledge Companion to Free Will. Routledge. pp. 374-388.
    The problem of free will as it is know in Western philosophical traditions is hardly known in China. Considering how central the problem is in the West, this is a remarkable fact. We try to explain this, and we offer insights into discussions within Chinese traditions that we think are related, not historically but regarding the issues discussed. Thus we introduce four central Chinese concepts, namely: (1) xīn 心 (heart, heart-mind), (2) xìng 性 (human nature, characteristic tendencies, inborn capacity), (3) (...)
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  37. Free Will and Mental Quausation.Sara Bernstein & Jessica M. Wilson - 2016 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 2 (2):310-331.
    Free will, if such there be, involves free choosing: the ability to mentally choose an outcome, where the outcome is 'free' in being, in some substantive sense, up to the agent of the choice. As such, it is clear that the questions of how to understand free will and mental causation are connected, for events of seemingly free choosing are mental events that appear to be efficacious vis-a-vis other mental events as well as physical events. Nonetheless, the free will and (...)
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  38. Freedom and Thought.Michael Bourke - 2016 - Modern Horizons:1-22.
    Despite recent neuroscientific research purporting to reveal that free will is an illusion, this paper will argue that agency is an inescapable feature of rationality and thought. My aim will not be to address the methodology or interpretation of such research, which I will only mention in passing. Rather, I will examine a collection of basic concepts which are presupposed by thought, and propose that these concepts are interrelated in ways that makes them both basic and irreducibly complex. The collection (...)
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  39. Descartes on Free Will and Moral Possibility.Brian Embry - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research:380-398.
    An early modern scholastic conception of moral possibility helps make sense of Descartes's own perplexing use of that concept and solves the exegetical puzzles surrounding Descartes's conflicting remarks about free will.
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  40. Free Will and the Construction of Options.Chandra Sripada - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (11):2913-2933.
    What are the distinctive psychological features that explain why humans are free, but many other creatures, such as simple animals, are not? It is natural to think that the answer has something to do with unique human capacities for decision-making. Philosophical discussions of how decision-making works, however, are tellingly incomplete. In particular, these discussions invariably presuppose an agent who has a mentally represented set of options already fully in hand. The emphasis is largely on the selective processes that identify the (...)
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  41. On Free Will and on the Nature of Philosophy.Hanoch Ben-Yami - 2015 - Iyyun 64:89-96.
  42. Freedom as Creativity.Bernard Berofsky - 2015 - Journal of Philosophy 112 (7):373-395.
    Determinism poses a prima facie problem about free will only if the latter is understood as counterfactual power, understood categorically, rather than self-determination. A key premise of the defense of incompatibilism provided by the Consequence Argument, namely, that laws are unalterable, presupposes that laws include more than the fundamental laws of physics. This premise is challenged by appeal to actual cases. The necessitarian assumptions embodied in that premise can be successfully challenged by a new and improved version of the regularity (...)
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  43. Evolution Beyond Determinism - on Dennett's Compatibilism and the Too Timeless Free Will Debate.Maria Brincker - 2015 - Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 3 (1):39-74.
    Most of the free will debate operates under the assumption that classic determinism and indeterminism are the only metaphysical options available. Through an analysis of Dennett’s view of free will as gradually evolving this article attempts to point to emergentist, interactivist and temporal metaphysical options, which have been left largely unexplored by contemporary theorists. Whereas, Dennett himself holds that “the kind of free will worth wanting” is compatible with classic determinism, I propose that his models of determinism fit poorly with (...)
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  44. Kane is Not Able: A Reply to Vicens’ “Self-Forming Actions and Confl Icts of Intention”.Gregg D. Caruso - 2015 - Southwest Philosophy Review 31 (2):21-26.
  45. The Idea of Will.M. M. Dorenbosch - 2015 - Journal of Consciousness Exploration and Research 6 (7):449-472.
    This article presents a new conceptual view on the conscious will. This new concept approaches our will from the perspective of the requirements of our neural-muscular system and not from our anthropocentric perspective. This approach not only repositions the will at the core of behavior control, it also integrates the studies of Libet and Wegner, which seem to support the opposite. The will does not return as an instrument we use to steer, but rather as part of the way we (...)
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  46. The Embodied and Social Dimensions of Free Will: The Value of Phenomenology.Andreas Elpidorou - 2015 - American Journal of Bioethics Neuroscience 6 (2):23-24.
  47. On Flew’s Compatibilism and His Objections to Theistic Libertarianism.Hakan Gundogdu - 2015 - Kaygı Uludağ University Faculty of Arts and Sciences Journal of Philosophy 25:115-142.
    Flew strongly defends a compatibilist thesis in the free will debate before going on to totally object to theistic libertarianism. His objections basically rely on his compatibilism embracing the notion of agent causation, which is not very common in compatibilist theses. Since he is a strong proponent of ordinary language philosophy, he also holds that linguistic analyses can certainly solve the free will problem as well as many other problems of philosophy. In doing so, he first uses the paradigm cases (...)
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  48. Free Will and Subject.John Shand - 2015 - Polish Journal of Philosophy 9 (1):51-70.
    Traditionally formulated, the problem of free will cannot be solved. We may nevertheless be justifiably confident that we have free will. The traditional formulation makes a solution impossible by juxtaposing contradictory objective and subjective accounts of whether there is free will, between which accounts there is no third way to choose. However, the objective stance inherently denies the conditions under which free will is possible, namely that there are subjects, and is thus question-begging. It gives us no good reason for (...)
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  49. Free Will Eliminativism: Reference, Error, and Phenomenology.Kevin Timpe - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (10):2823-2833.
    Shaun Nichols has recently argued that while the folk notion of free will is associated with error, a question still remains whether the concept of free will should be eliminated or preserved. He maintains that like other eliminativist arguments in philosophy, arguments that free will is an illusion seem to depend on substantive assumptions about reference. According to free will eliminativists, people have deeply mistaken beliefs about free will and this entails that free will does not exist. However, an alternative (...)
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  50. Dialogue on Alternating Consciousness: From Perception to Infinities and Back to Free Will.Claus Janew - 2014 - Journal of Consciousness Exploration and Research 5 (4):351-391.
    Can we trace back consciousness, reality, awareness, and free will to a single basic structure without giving up any of them? Can the universe exist in both real and individual ways without being composed of both? This dialogue founds consciousness and freedom of choice on the basis of a new reality concept that also includes the infinite as far as we understand it. Just the simplest distinction contains consciousness. It is not static, but a constant alternation of perspectives. From its (...)
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