Comparing deterministic agents: A new argument for compatibilism

Philosophical Explorations 27 (1):106-121 (2023)
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Abstract

This paper offers a new argument for compatibilism about moral responsibility by drawing attention to some overlooked implications of incompatibilism. More specifically, I argue that incompatibilists are committed to some unsavory claims about pairs of agents in deterministic worlds. These include comparative claims about moral responsibility, blameworthiness, desert, punishment, and the fittingness of reactive attitudes. I argue that we have good reasons to reject such comparisons because they fail to account for key differences between deterministic agents. This provides us with reason to embrace compatibilism and reject incompatibilism.

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References found in this work

Responsibility and Control: A Theory of Moral Responsibility.John Martin Fischer & Mark Ravizza - 1998 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by Mark Ravizza.
Free Will, Agency, and Meaning in Life.Derk Pereboom - 2014 - New York: Oxford University Press.
An Essay on Free Will.Peter Van Inwagen - 1983 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Responsibility and the Moral Sentiments.R. Jay Wallace - 1994 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Freedom and Resentment.Peter Strawson - 1962 - Proceedings of the British Academy 48:187-211.

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