Journal of Applied Philosophy 32 (2):115-132 (2015)

Abstract
There is an apparent tension in our everyday moral responsibility practices. On the one hand, it is commonly assumed that moral responsibility requires voluntary control: an agent can be morally responsible only for those things that fall within the scope of her voluntary control. On the other hand, we regularly praise and blame individuals for mental states and conditions that appear to fall outside the scope of their voluntary control, such as desires, emotions, beliefs, and other attitudes. In order to resolve this apparent tension, many philosophers appeal to a tracing principle to argue that agents are morally responsible for those attitudes whose existence can be traced back, causally, to a voluntary action or omission in the past. My aim in this article is to critically evaluate this tracing strategy and to argue that it gives us a misguided picture of when and why we are morally responsible for our attitudes. I argue that we should accept a ‘judgment sensitivity’ condition of moral responsibility rather than a ‘voluntary control’ condition, and defend this account against various objections
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DOI 10.1111/japp.12107
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Responsibility and Vigilance.Samuel Murray - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (2):507-527.
Maximalism and Moral Harmony.Douglas W. Portmore - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (2):318-341.
Moral Responsibility for Concepts.Rachel Fredericks - 2018 - European Journal of Philosophy 26 (4):1381-1397.
The Place of the Trace: Negligence and Responsibility.Samuel Murray - 2020 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 11 (1):39-52.

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