Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (4):427-443 (2020)

Joseph Bowen
University of St. Andrews
The Will Theory of Rights says that having control over another’s duties grounds rights. The Will Theory has commonly been objected to on the grounds that it undergenerates right-ascriptions along three fronts. This paper systematically examines a range of positions open to the Will Theory in response to these counterexamples, while being faithful to the Will Theory’s focus on normative control. It argues that of the seemingly plausible ways the defender of the Will Theory can proceed, one cannot both be faithful to the theory’s focus on normative control as the grounds of rights and achieve extensional adequacy.
Keywords Rights  Directed Duties  Normative Control  Will Theory of Rights
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1017/can.2019.57
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 50,308
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Morality of Freedom.Joseph Raz - 1986 - Philosophy 63 (243):119-122.
Are There Any Natural Rights?H. L. A. Hart - 1955 - Philosophical Review 64 (2):175-191.
The Nature of Rights.Leif Wenar - 2005 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 33 (3):223-252.
The Nature of Claim-Rights.Leif Wenar - 2013 - Ethics 123 (2):202-229.
What is It to Wrong Someone? A Puzzle About Justice.Michael Thompson - 2004 - In R. Jay Wallace, Philip Pettit, Samuel Scheffler & Michael Smith (eds.), Reason and Value: Themes from the Moral Philosophy of Joseph Raz. Clarendon Press. pp. 333-384.

View all 18 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Reciprocity Theory of Rights.David Rodin - 2014 - Law and Philosophy 33 (3):281-308.
The Theories of Rights Debate.David Frydrych - 2018 - Jurisprudence 9 (3):566-588.
Promises, Rights, and Deontic Control.Crescente Molina - forthcoming - Law and Philosophy:1-18.
Rights, Duties, and Moral Conflicts.Biasetti Pierfrancesco - 2014 - Etica E Politica (2):1042-1062.
What Is the Will Theory of Rights?David Frydrych - 2019 - Ratio Juris 32 (4):455-472.
The Structure of Basic Human Rights.George E. Panichas - 1985 - Law and Philosophy 4 (3):343 - 375.
Dignity, Torture, and Human Rights.Suzy Killmister - 2016 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 19 (5):1087-1101.
Rights in Criminal Law in the Light of a Will Theory.Elias Moser - 2019 - Criminal Justice Ethics 38 (3):176-197.
The Will Theory of Rights: A Defence. [REVIEW]Paul Graham - 1996 - Law and Philosophy 15 (3):257 - 270.


Added to PP index

Total views
27 ( #359,554 of 2,326,005 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
27 ( #24,416 of 2,326,005 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes