Free Will and Reasonable Doubt

American Philosophical Quarterly 46 (2):131-140 (2009)
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Abstract

The goal of this paper is to explain and defend the following argument: (1) If it can be reasonably doubted that someone had free will with respect to some action, then it is a requirement of justice to refrain from doing serious retributive harm to him in response to that action. (2) Anyone who believes the free will debate to be philosophically valuable must accept that it can be reasonably doubted that anyone ever has free will. (3) Therefore, anyone who believes the free will debate to be philosophically valuable must accept that it is a requirement of justice to refrain from serious retributive harm.

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Benjamin Vilhauer
City College of New York (CUNY)

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