Neuroethics 3 (2):121-133 (2010)

Authors
Arno Wouters
Utrecht University
M.m.s.k. Sie
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Abstract
Many philosophers ignore developments in the behavioral, cognitive, and neurosciences that purport to challenge our ideas of free will and responsibility. The reason for this is that the challenge is often framed as a denial of the idea that we are able to act differently than we do. However, most philosophers think that the ability to do otherwise is irrelevant to responsibility and free will. Rather it is our ability to act for reasons that is crucial. We argue that the scientific findings indicate that it is not so obvious that our views of free will and responsibility can be grounded in the ability to act for reasons without introducing metaphysical obscurities. This poses a challenge to philosophers. We draw the conclusion that philosophers are wrong not to address the recent scientific developments and that scientists are mistaken in formulating their challenge in terms of the freedom to do otherwise.
Keywords Compatibilism  Acting for reasons  Reasons-responsiveness  Personal responsibility  Free will  Determinism
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DOI 10.1007/s12152-009-9054-8
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References found in this work BETA

Freedom and Resentment.Peter Strawson - 1962 - Proceedings of the British Academy 48:187-211.
The Significance of Free Will.Robert Kane - 1996 - Oxford University Press USA.

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Citations of this work BETA

Skepticism About Moral Responsibility.Gregg D. Caruso - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (2018):1-81.
Situated Agency: Towards an Affordance-Based, Sensorimotor Theory of Action.Martin Weichold - 2018 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 17 (4):761-785.
Consciousness, Free Will, Moral Responsibility.Caruso Gregg - 2018 - In Rocco Gennaro (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Consciousness. New York: Routledge. pp. 89-91.

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