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Summary This category is used for topics that have not been a focus of major attention in the free will debate and which therefore do not have categories of their own devoted to them. 
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  1. Gradations of Volition: An Essay in Honor of Father Joseph Owens CSsR.Robert Allen - manuscript
    I demonstrate here that St. Anselm”s understanding of free will fits neatly into an Aristotelian conceptual framework. Aristotle”s four causes are first aligned with Anselm”s four senses of “will”. The volitional hierarchy Anselm”s definition of free will entails is then detailed, culminating in its reconciliation with Eudaimonism. The summum bonum turns out to be the apex of that series of actualizations or perfections. I conclude by explicating Anselm’s teleological understanding of sin by reference to his analog of Aristotle’s essence-accident distinction.
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  2. Love and Free Will.Aaron Smuts - manuscript
    Many think that love would be a casualty of free will skepticism. I disagree. I argue that love would be largely unaffected if we came to deny free will, not simply because we cannot shake the attitude, but because love is not chosen, nor do we want it to be. Here, I am not alone; others have reached similar conclusions. But a few important distinctions have been overlooked. Even if hard incompatibilism is true, not all love is equal. Although we (...)
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  3. Women and Liberty, 1600-1800: Philosophical Essays.Jacqueline Broad & Karen Detlefsen - forthcoming - Oxford University Press.
    This book addresses the theme of liberty as it is found in the writing of women philosophers of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, or as it is theorized with respect to women and their lives. It covers both theoretical and practical philosophy, with chapters grappling with problems in the metaphysics of free will (both human and God’s), the liberty (or lack thereof) of women in their moral, personal lives as well as their social-political, public lives, and the interactions between the (...)
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  4. Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Philosophy.Desmonde Clarke Catherine Wilson (ed.) - forthcoming - Oxford University Press.
  5. The Ability to Do Otherwise and the New Dispositionalism.Romy Jaster - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    According to the New Dispositionalist’s response to the Frankfurt Cases, Jones can do otherwise because Black merely masks (or finks), but does not deprive Jones of the relevant ability. This reasoning stands in the tradition of a line of thought according to which an informed view of the truth conditions of ability attributions allows for a compatibilist stance. The promise is that once we understand how abilities work, it turns out that the ability to do otherwise is compatible with determinism, (...)
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  6. Reasons‐Sensitivity and Degrees of Free Will.Alex Kaiserman - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
  7. Piercing the Smoke Screen: Dualism, Free Will, and Christianity.Samuel Murray, Elise Dykhuis & Thomas Nadelhoffer - forthcoming - Journal of Cognition and Culture.
    Research on the folk psychology of free will suggests that people believe free will is incompatible with determinism and that human decision-making cannot be exhaustively characterized by physical processes. Some suggest that certain elements of Western cultural history, especially Christianity, have helped to entrench these beliefs in the folk conceptual economy. Thus, on the basis of this explanation, one should expect to find three things: (1) a significant correlation between belief in dualism and belief in free will, (2) that people (...)
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  8. The Principle of Sufficient Reason and Libertarianism: A Critique of Pruss.Brandon Rdzak - forthcoming - Philosophia:1-16.
    Alexander Pruss’s Principle of Sufficient Reason states that every contingent true proposition has an explanation. Pruss thinks that he can plausibly maintain both his PSR and his account of libertarian free will. This is because his libertarianism has it that contingent true propositions reporting free choices are self-explanatory. But I don’t think Pruss can plausibly maintain both his PSR and libertarianism without a rift occurring in one or the other. Similar to the old luck/randomness objection, I contend that Pruss’s libertarianism (...)
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  9. Dependence, Transcendence, and Creaturely Freedom: On the Incompatibility of Three Theistic Doctrines.Aaron Segal - forthcoming - Mind.
    In this paper I argue for the incompatibility of three claims, each of them quite attractive to a theist. First, the doctrine of deep dependence: the universe depends for its existence, in a non-causal way, on God. Second, the doctrine of true transcendence: the universe is wholly distinct from God; God is separate and apart from the universe in respect of mereology, modes, and mentality. Third, the doctrine of robust creaturely freedom: some creature performs some act such that he could (...)
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  10. Free Actions as a Natural Kind.Oisín Deery - 2021 - Synthese 198 (1):823-843.
    Do we have free will? Understanding free will as the ability to act freely, and free actions as exercises of this ability, I maintain that the default answer to this question is “yes.” I maintain that free actions are a natural kind, by relying on the influential idea that kinds are homeostatic property clusters. The resulting position builds on the view that agents are a natural kind and yields an attractive alternative to recent revisionist accounts of free action. My view (...)
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  11. Free Will and the Rebel Angels in Medieval Philosophy.Tobias Hoffmann - 2021 - Cambridge University Press.
    In this book Tobias Hoffmann studies the medieval free will debate during its liveliest period, from the 1220s to the 1320s, and clarifies its background in Aristotle, Augustine, and earlier medieval thinkers. Among the wide range of authors he examines are not only well-known thinkers such as Thomas Aquinas, Duns Scotus, and William of Ockham, but also a number of authors who were just as important in their time and deserve to be rediscovered today. To shed further light on their (...)
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  12. The Zygote Argument Is Still Invalid: So What?Kristin M. Mickelson - 2021 - Philosophia 49 (2):705-722.
    In “The Zygote Argument is Invalid: Now What?”, Kristin Mickelson argues that Alfred Mele’s original Zygote Argument is invalid: its two premises tell us merely that the truth of determinism is correlated with the absence of free human agents, but the argument nonetheless concludes with a specific explanation for that correlation, namely that deterministic laws preclude—rule out, destroy, undermine, make impossible, rob us of—free will. In a recent essay, Gabriel De Marco grants that the original Zygote Argument is invalid for (...)
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  13. Buddhism, Free Will, and Punishment: Taking Buddhist Ethics Seriously.Gregg D. Caruso - 2020 - Zygon 55 (2):474-496.
  14. Free Will: Real or Illusion - A Debate.Gregg D. Caruso, Christian List & Cory J. Clark - 2020 - The Philosopher 108 (1).
    Debate on free will with Christian List, Gregg Caruso, and Cory Clark. The exchange is focused on Christian List's book Why Free Will Is Real.
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  15. Sceptical Deliberations.Simon‐Pierre Chevarie‐Cossette - 2020 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 101 (3):383-408.
    Suppose I am a leeway sceptic: I think that, whenever I face a choice between two courses of action, I lack true alternatives. Can my practical deliberation be rational? Call this the Deliberation Question. This paper has three aims in tackling it. Its constructive aim is to provide a unified account of practical deliberation. Its corrective aim is to amend the way that philosophers have recently framed the Deliberation Question. Finally, its disputative aim is to argue that leeway sceptics cannot (...)
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  16. It’s Up to You.Randolph Clarke - 2020 - The Monist 103 (3):328-341.
    Part of our ordinary conception of our freedom is the idea that commonly when we act—and often even when we don’t act—it is up to us whether we do this or that. This paper examines efforts to spell out what must be the case for this idea to be correct. Several claims regarding the basic metaphysics of agential powers are considered; they are found not to shed light on the issue. Thinking about agents’ psychological capacities provides some illumination, though the (...)
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  17. Free Will & Empirical Arguments for Epiphenomenalism.Nadine Elzein - 2020 - In Peter Róna & László Zsolnai (eds.), Agency and Causal Explanation in Economics. Virtues and Economics, vol 5. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. pp. 3-20.
    While philosophers have worried about mental causation for centuries, worries about the causal relevance of conscious phenomena are also increasingly featuring in neuroscientific literature. Neuroscientists have regarded the threat of epiphenomenalism as interesting primarily because they have supposed that it entails free will scepticism. However, the steps that get us from a premise about the causal irrelevance of conscious phenomena to a conclusion about free will are not entirely clear. In fact, if we examine popular philosophical accounts of free will, (...)
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  18. Can eternity be saved? A comment on Stump and Rogers.William Hasker - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 87 (2):137-148.
    Eleonore Stump and Katherin Rogers have recently defended the doctrine of divine timelessness in separate essays, arguing that the doctrine is consistent with libertarian free will and that timeless divine knowledge is providentially useful. I show that their defenses do not succeed; a doctrine of eternity having these features cannot be saved.
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  19. Is Free Will Confucian? Li Zehou's Confucian Revision of the Kantian Will.Robert A. Carleo Iii - 2020 - Philosophy East and West 70 (1):63-83.
    In recent decades a small wave of scholars has argued that classical Confucian moral teachings are characterized by the lack of a concept of free will. Li Zehou, in contrast, places free will at the center of his reading of classical Confucian ethics. Is this too interpretive? Does it do violence to the concept of free will, or to classical Confucian morality? Could it even be un-Confucian?Li Zehou puts forth his systematic ethics as part of “a world philosophy that incorporates (...)
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  20. Free Will and Desire.Brian Looper - 2020 - Erkenntnis 85 (6):1347-1360.
    I make a case for the thesis that no one can refrain from trying to attain the object of his or her currently strongest desire. I arrive there by defending an argument by Peter van Inwagen for a relatively mild conclusion about the way desires limit our abilities, and by arguing that if van Inwagen’s conclusion is correct, and correct for his reasons, so is my bolder thesis. I close with replies to objections, such as the objection that it is (...)
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  21. Mental Freedom and Freedom of the Loving Heart: Free Will and Buddhist Meditation.Karin L. Meyers - 2020 - Zygon 55 (2):519-539.
    In Buddhism, Meditation and Free Will: A Theory of Mental Freedom , Rick Repetti explains how the dynamics of Buddhist meditation can result in a kind of metacognition and metavolitional control that exceeds what is required for free will and defeats the most powerful forms of free will skepticism. This article argues that although the Buddhist path requires and enhances the kind of mental and volitional control Repetti describes, the central dynamic of the path and meditation is better understood as (...)
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  22. Robotic Ai, Crispr, and Free Will.Arthur C. Petersen - 2020 - Zygon 55 (2):283-285.
  23. A Defense of Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will: A Theory of Mental Freedom.Rick Repetti - 2020 - Zygon 55 (2):540-564.
    This is my response to the criticisms of Gregg Caruso, David Cummiskey, and Karin Meyers, in their roles as members of the “Author Meets Critics” panel devoted to my book, Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will: A Theory of Mental Freedom at the 2019 annual meeting of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association, organized by Christian Coseru. Caruso's main objection is that I am not sufficiently attentive to details of opposing arguments in Western philosophy, and Cummiskey's and Meyers’ objections, (...)
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  24. The Moral Tug: Conscience, Quiescence and Free Will.King Rolfe - 2020 - Theologica 4 (2).
    In this article I argue that if conscience, working properly, involves some form of ‘moral tug’, then this is incompatible with the state of ‘quiescence’ put forward as a central element of Eleonore Stump’s account of repentance. Quiescence is also a key notion for Stump’s theodicy in Wandering in the Darkness and Stump’s thesis in her book, Atonement. Quiescence is about an inactive, or neutral, or stationary, state of the will prior to turning to the good, or God, through receiving (...)
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  25. Free Will in the Clustered-Minds Multiverse, and Some Comments on S. Sarasvathy’s ‘Choice Matters’.Christian D. Schade - 2020 - Mind and Society 19 (2):323-330.
    This paper sketches a new version of the multiverse interpretation of quantum mechanics, the clustered-minds multiverse, that has been presented in detail elsewhere. It briefly shows why it grants us with free will and reflects upon the possibilty of singular-universe explanations of free will. It also critically comments upon S. Sarasvathy's 'choice matters,' one of the other contributions to this mini symposium.
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  26. W. Matthews Grant, Free Will and God’s Universal Causality. [REVIEW]Greg Welty - 2020 - Philosophia Christi 22 (1):159-164.
    A review of W. Matthews Grant's *Free Will and God's Universal Causality*, which argues that we can reconcile 'divine universal causality' and human 'libertarian free will' by adding an 'extrinsic model' of divine agency, resulting in a trio of doctrines which Grant calls 'dual sources' (divine universal causality, libertarian free will, extrinsic model of divine agency). On this view, both God and humans are the ultimate cause of each human choice in the universe.
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  27. Can Life Be Meaningful Without Free Will?Drew Chastain - 2019 - Philosophia 47 (4):1069-1086.
    If we lack deep free agency, like that supposed by metaphysical libertarianism, should we view life as meaningless, pointless, or not worth living? Here I present a new argument in support of meaning-compatibilism, or the view that life can indeed be meaningful without our having deep free agency. I show that this argument secures meaning-compatibilism more effectively than an argument provided by Derk Pereboom. In the process, we learn that Susan Wolf’s hybrid theory of meaning in life is not equipped (...)
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  28. The Free Will Defense Revisited: The Instrumental Value of Significant Free Will.Frederick Choo & Esther Goh - 2019 - International Journal of Theology, Philosophy and Science (4):32-45.
    Alvin Plantinga has famously responded to the logical problem of evil by appealing to the intrinsic value of significant free will. A problem, however, arises because traditional theists believe that both God and the redeemed who go to heaven cannot do wrong acts. This entails that both God and the redeemed in heaven lack significant freedom. If significant freedom is indeed valuable, then God and the redeemed in heaven would lack something intrinsically valuable. However, if significant freedom is not intrinsically (...)
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  29. Divine Omniscience and Human Free Will: A Logical and Metaphysical Analysis.Ciro De Florio & Aldo Frigerio - 2019 - Springer Verlag.
    This book deals with an old conundrum: if God knows what we will choose tomorrow, how can we be free to choose otherwise? If all our choices are already written, is our freedom simply an illusion? This book provides a precise analysis of this dilemma using the tools of modern ontology and the logic of time. With a focus on three intertwined concepts - God's nature, the formal structure of time, and the metaphysics of time, including the relationship between temporal (...)
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  30. Sublating the Free Will Problematic: Powers, Agency and Causal Determination.Ruth Groff - 2019 - Synthese 196 (1):179-200.
    I argue that realism about causal powers sublates the passivist, Humean-inflected free will problematic. In the first part of the paper I show that adopting what I call ‘powers-non-determinism’ reconfigures the conceptual terrain with respect to the causation component of the contemporary problematic. In part two I show how adopting ‘powers-non-determinism’ significantly alters the nature of the discussion with respect to the agency component of the problematic. In part three I compare ‘powers-non-determinism’ to an otherwise- Humean agent causal position.
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  31. The Neo-Molinist Square Stands Firm: A Rejoinder to Kirk MacGregor.Elijah Hess - 2019 - Philosophia Christi 21 (2):391-406.
    In a previous issue of Philosophia Christi, Kirk MacGregor responded to an essay of mine in which I argued for a neo-Molinist account of open theism. The argument demonstrated how, given standard counterfactual semantics, one could derive an “open future square of opposition,” that is, a depiction of the logical relations that hold between future-tense statements from an open theistic standpoint. Conceding the validity of the argument, MacGregor nevertheless sought to deny its soundness by criticizing both its conclusion and the (...)
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  32. Ways to Be Blameworthy: Rightness, Wrongness, and Responsibility.Elinor Mason - 2019 - Oxford University Press.
    Elinor Mason draws on ethics and responsibility theory to present a pluralistic view of both wrongness and blameworthiness. Mason argues that our moral concepts, rightness and wrongness, must be connected to our responsibility concepts. But the connection is not simple. She identifies three different ways to be blameworthy, corresponding to different ways of acting wrongly. The paradigmatic way to be blameworthy is to act subjectively wrongly. Mason argues for an account of subjective obligation that is connected to the notion of (...)
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  33. Free Will, Self‐Creation, and the Paradox of Moral Luck.Kristin M. Mickelson - 2019 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 43 (1):224-256.
    How is the problem of free will related to the problem of moral luck? In this essay, I answer that question and outline a new solution to the paradox of moral luck, the source-paradox solution. This solution both explains why the paradox arises and why moral luck does not exist. To make my case, I highlight a few key connections between the paradox of moral luck and two related problems, namely the problem of free will and determinism and the paradox (...)
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  34. The Moral Problem with the Free Will Defense Against the Problem of Evil.Andrew Pavelich - 2019 - Heythrop Journal 60 (5):678-688.
  35. Theism and the Metaphysics of Free Will.John C. Wingard - 2019 - Philosophia Christi 21 (1):189-197.
    Two recently published collections of essays—Free Will and Theism, edited by Kevin Timpe and Daniel Speak, and Free Will and Classical Theism, edited by the late Hugh McCann—represent the state of the art in current analytic philosophy and analytic theology with respect to issues at the intersection of the metaphysics of free will and Christian theism that have vexed philosophers and theologians throughout Christian history. Despite a marked imbalance of incompatibilist authors over compatibilist authors in both volumes, the essays in (...)
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  36. Meaning, Autonomy, Symbolic Causality, and Free Will.Russ Abbott - 2018 - Review of General Psychology 22 (1):85-94.
    As physical entities that translate symbols into physical actions, computers offer insights into the nature of meaning and agency. • Physical symbol systems, generically known as agents, link abstractions to material actions. The meaning of a symbol is defined as the physical actions an agent takes when the symbol is encountered. • An agent has autonomy when it has the power to select actions based on internal decision processes. Autonomy offers a partial escape from constraints imposed by direct physical influences (...)
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  37. Self-Determination Vs. Freedom for God and the Angels: A Problem with Anselm's Theory of Free Will.Michael Barnwell - 2018 - The Saint Anselm Journal 14 (1):13-32.
    Anselm is known for offering a distinctive definition of freedom of choice as “the ability of preserving uprightness of will for its own sake.” When we turn to Anselm’s account of the devil’s fall in De Casu Diaboli, however, this idiosyncratic understanding of freedom is not at the forefront. In that text, Anselm seemingly assumes a traditional understanding of free will defined in terms of alternative possibilities for the angels. These alternative possibilities must be present so the angels can engage (...)
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  38. Free Will, Grace, and Anti-Pelagianism.Taylor W. Cyr & Matthew T. Flummer - 2018 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 83 (2):183-199.
    Critics of synergism often complain that the view entails Pelagianism, and so, critics think, monergism looks like the only live option. Critics of monergism often claim that the view entails that the blame for human sin ultimately traces to God. Recently, several philosophers have attempted to chart a middle path by offering soteriological accounts which are monergistic but maintain the resistibility of God’s grace. In this paper, we present a challenge to such accounts of the resistibility of grace, namely that (...)
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  39. Freedom of the Will and No-Self in Buddhism.Pujarini Das & Vineet Sahu - 2018 - Journal of Indian Council of Philosophical Research 35 (1):121-138.
    The Buddha, unlike the Upaniṣadic or Brahmanical way, has avoided the concept of the self, and it seems to be left with limited conceptual possibilities for free will and moral responsibility. Now, the question is, if the self is crucial for free will, then how can free will be conceptualized in the Buddhist ‘no-self’ (anattā) doctrine. Nevertheless, the Buddha accepts a dynamic notion of cetanā (intention/volition), and it explicitly implies that he rejects the ultimate or absolute freedom of the will, (...)
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  40. Omissions: Agency, Metaphysics and Responsibility, Written by Randolph Clarke.Tyron Goldschmidt - 2018 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 15 (1):97-99.
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  41. Paul Russell, The Limits of Free Will: Selected Essays. [REVIEW]Lorenzo Greco - 2018 - Rivista di Filosofia 109 (3):519-521.
  42. Rousseau and Hobbes: Nature, Free Will, and the Passions.Ryan Patrick Hanley - 2018 - Contemporary Political Theory 17 (S1):35-38.
  43. Misak's Peirce and Pragmatism's Metaphysical Commitments.Andrew Howat - 2018 - Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 54 (3):378.
    In this comment on Misak’s Cambridge Pragmatism, I examine a case study—debate about the existence of free will—in order to explore residual tensions between Misak’s ‘truth-affirming,’ Peircean pragmatism, and mainstream analytic philosophy. I suggest that Misak’s Peirce makes a metaphysical commitment to the existence of rational self-control, and thereby to the existence of free will. I also suggest, however, that her ‘analytic pragmatism’ thus far offers few clues about how we should defend such a commitment from skeptical arguments emerging from (...)
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  44. O vědomí, náboženství a svobodě vůle.Tomas Hribek & James Hill - 2018 - Filosoficky Casopis 66 (2):171-183.
    [On Consciousness, Religion, and Freedom of the Will] An interview with Daniel Dennett on consciousness, religion and free will.
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  45. Buddhist Perspectives on Free Will: Agentless Agency? Ed. By Rick Repetti.Katie Javanaud - 2018 - Philosophy East and West 68 (2):633-639.
    Buddhist Perspectives on Free Will: Agentless Agency? gives voice, for the first time, to exclusively Buddhist perspectives on free will. In bringing together the work of some of the most important thinkers in this relatively new area of Buddhist studies, editor Rick Repetti gives the reader access both to the best theories on Buddhism and free will currently available and to the scholarly debates shaping articulations of and responses to the problem under consideration. Structurally, the book represents a philosophical exchange (...)
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  46. Reformulating the Buddhist Free Will Problem: Why There Can Be No Definitive Solution.Katie Javanaud - 2018 - Journal of Indian Philosophy 46 (4):773-803.
    In recent years, scholars have become increasingly interested in reconstructing a Buddhist stance on the free will problem. Since then, Buddhism has been variously described as implicitly hard determinist, paleo-compatibilist, neo-compatibilist and libertarian. Some scholars, however, question the legitimacy of Buddhist free will theorizing, arguing that Buddhism does not share sufficiently many presuppositions required to articulate the problem. This paper argues that, though Buddhist and Western versions of the free will problem are not perfectly isomorphic, a problem analogous to that (...)
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  47. Libertà del volere – dalla filosofia teoretica alla filosofia pratica. Un dialogo con Sandro Nannini.Christoph Lumer - 2018 - In Christoph Lumer & Giacomo Romano (eds.), Libertà del volere – dalla filosofia teoretica alla filosofia pratica. Un dialogo con Sandro Nannini. Roma; 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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  48. Rule A.P. Roger Turner & Justin Capes - 2018 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (4):580-595.
    Rule A: if it's metaphysically necessary that p, we may validly infer that no one is even partly morally responsible for the fact that p. Our principal aim in this article is to highlight the importance of this rule and to respond to two recent challenges to it. We argue that rule A is more important to contemporary theories of moral responsibility than has previously been recognized. We then consider two recent challenges to the rule and argue that neither challenge (...)
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  49. Van Cleve on Reid on Exertion and Incompatibilism.Gideon Yaffe - 2018 - Analytic Philosophy 59 (4):539-550.
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  50. Explaining (Away) the Epistemic Condition on Moral Responsibility.Gunnar Björnsson - 2017 - In Philip Robichaud & Jan Willem Wieland (eds.), Responsibility - The Epistemic Condition. Oxford University Press. pp. 146–162.
    It is clear that lack of awareness of the consequences of an action can undermine moral responsibility and blame for these consequences. But when and how it does so is controversial. Sometimes an agent believing that the outcome might occur is excused because it seemed unlikely to her, and sometimes an agent having no idea that it would occur is nevertheless to blame. A low or zero degree of belief might seem to excuse unless the agent “should have known better”, (...)
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