The Zygote Argument is invalid: Now what?

Philosophical Studies 172 (11):2911-2929 (2015)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Alfred Mele’s original Zygote Argument is invalid. At most, its premises entail the negative thesis that free action is incompossible with deterministic laws, but its conclusion asserts the positive thesis that deterministic laws preclude free action. The original, explanatory conclusion of the Zygote Argument can be defended only by supplementing the Zygote Argument with a best-explanation argument that identifies deterministic laws as menacing. Arguably, though, the best explanation for the manipulation victim’s lack of freedom and responsibility is his constitutive luck, which is a problem irrespective of the natural laws that obtain. This proposed explanation leads to a new “diagnostic” version of the Zygote Argument which concludes that free action is impossible even though deterministic laws pose no threat whatsoever to free will.

Similar books and articles

Aborting the Zygote Argument.Stephen Kearns - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 160 (3):379-389.
Defending (a Modified Version of) the Zygote Argument.Patrick Todd - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (1):189-203.
So-Far Incompatibilism and the so-Far Consequence Argument.Stephen Hetherington - 2006 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 73 (1):163-178.
Incompatibilism and the Past.Andrew M. Bailey - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (2):351-376.
Defending Direct Source Incompatibilism.Eric Yang - 2012 - Acta Analytica 27 (3):325-333.
Deliberation Incompatibilism.Edmund Henden - 2010 - Dialectica 64 (3):313-333.
Paley’s Argument for Design.Graham Oppy - 2002 - Philo 5 (2):161-173.
Manipulation and Mitigation.Andrew C. Khoury - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (1):283-294.

Analytics

Added to PP
2013-07-11

Downloads
831 (#9,298)

6 months
8 (#97,052)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Kristin M. Mickelson
University of Colorado, Boulder (PhD)

References found in this work

Free Will and Luck.Alfred R. Mele - 2006 - Oxford University Press.
The Impossibility of Moral Responsibility.Galen J. Strawson - 1994 - Philosophical Studies 75 (1-2):5-24.
Freedom and Belief.Galen Strawson - 1986 - Oxford University Press.

View all 28 references / Add more references