Authors
Aaron Morgan Anderson
University of San Francisco
Abstract
This paper revisits the classical case of determinism and free will. This explication argues for compatibilism while accounting for what has been most often dismissed in the classic philosophical literature: knowledge. Although philosophy is engrossed with epistemology, it seems that we have overlooked the relevance of knowledge when speaking of free will and determinism. When analyzing the nature of knowledge, in adequate depth, we ultimately find an illustration of what we know as free will. Simultaneously, this illustration also renders hard determinism untenable. It is concluded that knowledge relates to free will as follows: 1. Having knowledge and not having knowledge are not equivalent statements. 2. That is to say, there is a difference between having knowledge and not having knowledge. 3. A difference in knowledge can occur in an agent from moment to moment. 4. A difference in knowledge for an agent can only be manifested if and only if such an agent has the capacity to acquire or lose such knowledge; to move from not having to having or vice versa. 5. We have the capacity to acquire knowledge. 6. Knowledge allows things to occur to you. 7. That which does occur to you to choose, you can be free to choose. 8. You can be free to choose. 9. Therefore, you can have free will.
Keywords free will  determinism  compatiblism  knowledge  Putnam  Dennett  Harris  Knowledge  Metaphysics  causation  emergentism
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Psychological Predicates.Hilary Putnam - 1967 - In W. H. Capitan & D. D. Merrill (eds.), Art, Mind, and Religion. University of Pittsburgh Press. pp. 37--48.
Dualism.Howard Robinson - 2002 - In Stephen P. Stich & Ted A. Warfield (eds.), Blackwell Guide to Philosophy of Mind. Blackwell. pp. 85--101.

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