A new approach to manipulation arguments

Philosophical Studies 152 (1):127-133 (2011)

Authors
Patrick Todd
University of Edinburgh
Abstract
There are several argumentative strategies for advancing the thesis that moral responsibility is incompatible with causal determinism. One prominent such strategy is to argue that agents who meet compatibilist conditions for moral responsibility can nevertheless be subject to responsibility-undermining manipulation. In this paper, I argue that incompatibilists advancing manipulation arguments against compatibilism have been shouldering an unnecessarily heavy dialectical burden. Traditional manipulation arguments present cases in which manipulated agents meet all compatibilist conditions for moral responsibility, but are (allegedly) not responsible for their behavior. I argue, however, that incompatibilists can make do with the more modest (and harder to resist) claim that the manipulation in question is mitigating with respect to moral responsibility. The focus solely on whether a manipulated agent is or is not morally responsible has, I believe, masked the full force of manipulation-style arguments against compatibilism. Here, I aim to unveil their real power.
Keywords manipulation argument
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DOI 10.1007/s11098-009-9465-8
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References found in this work BETA

Free Will and Luck.Alfred R. Mele - 2006 - Oxford University Press.
Free Will and Luck: Reply to Critics.Alfred R. Mele - 2007 - Philosophical Explorations 10 (2):153 – 155.

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Citations of this work BETA

Free Will, Self‐Creation, and the Paradox of Moral Luck.Kristin M. Mickelson - 2019 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 43 (1):224-256.
Defending (a Modified Version of) the Zygote Argument.Patrick Todd - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 164 (1):189-203.
Does God Have the Moral Standing to Blame?Patrick Todd - 2018 - Faith and Philosophy 35 (1):33-55.
The Replication Argument for Incompatibilism.Patrick Todd - 2019 - Erkenntnis 84 (6):1341-1359.

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