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Derk Pereboom
Cornell University
  1. Living Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2005 - Cambridge University Press.
    Most people assume that, even though some degenerative or criminal behavior may be caused by influences beyond our control, ordinary human actions are not similarly generated, but rather are freely chosen, and we can be praiseworthy or blameworthy for them. A less popular and more radical claim is that factors beyond our control produce all of the actions we perform. It is this hard determinist stance that Derk Pereboom articulates in Living Without Free Will. Pereboom argues that our best scientific (...)
  2. Free Will, Agency, and Meaning in Life.Derk Pereboom - 2014 - Oxford University Press.
    Derk Pereboom articulates and defends an original, forward-looking conception of moral responsibility. He argues that although we may not possess the kind of free will that is normally considered necessary for moral responsibility, this does not jeopardize our sense of ourselves as agents, or a robust sense of achievement and meaning in life.
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  3. Four Views on Free Will.John Martin Fischer, Robert Kane, Derk Pereboom & Manuel Vargas - 2007 - Wiley-Blackwell.
  4.  49
    Consciousness and the Prospects of Physicalism.Derk Pereboom - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
    In this book, Derk Pereboom explores how physicalism might best be formulated and defended against the best anti-physicalist arguments. Two responses to the knowledge and conceivability arguments are set out and developed. The first exploits the open possibility that introspective representations fail to represent mental properties as they are in themselves; specifically, that introspection represents phenomenal properties as having certain characteristic qualitative natures, which these properties might actually lack. The second response draws on the proposal that currently unknown fundamental intrinsic (...)
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  5. Hard-Incompatibilist Existentialism: Neuroscience, Punishment, and Meaning in Life.Derk Pereboom & Gregg D. Caruso - 2018 - In Gregg D. Caruso & Owen Flanagan (eds.), Neuroexistentialism: Meaning, Morals, and Purpose in the Age of Neuroscience. Oxford University Press.
    As philosophical and scientific arguments for free will skepticism continue to gain traction, we are likely to see a fundamental shift in the way people think about free will and moral responsibility. Such shifts raise important practical and existential concerns: What if we came to disbelieve in free will? What would this mean for our interpersonal relationships, society, morality, meaning, and the law? What would it do to our standing as human beings? Would it cause nihilism and despair as some (...)
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  6. Hard Incompatibilism.Derk Pereboom - 2007 - In John Martin Fischer (ed.), Four Views on Free Will. Blackwell.
     
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  7. Living Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (2):494-497.
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  8. Defending Hard Incompatibilism.Derk Pereboom - 2005 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 29 (1):228-247.
    In _Living Without Free Will_, I develop and argue for a view according to which our being morally responsible would be ruled out if determinism were true, and also if indeterminism were true and the causes of our actions were exclusively events.1 Absent agent causation, indeterministic causal histories are as threatening to moral responsibility as deterministic histories are, and a generalization argument from manipulation cases shows that deterministic histories indeed undermine moral responsibility. Agent causation has not been ruled out as (...)
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  9. Robust Nonreductive Materialism.Derk Pereboom - 2002 - Journal of Philosophy 99 (10):499-531.
  10. Determinism Al Dente.Derk Pereboom - 1995 - Noûs 29 (1):21-45.
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  11. Is Our Conception of Agent-Causation Coherent?Derk Pereboom - 2004 - Philosophical Topics 32 (1/2):275-286.
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  12.  13
    Incapacitation, Reintegration, and Limited General Deterrence.Derk Pereboom - forthcoming - Neuroethics:1-11.
    The aim of this article is to set out a theory for treatment of criminals that rejects retributive justification for punishment; does not fall afoul of a plausible prohibition on using people merely as means; and actually works in the real world. The theory can be motivated by free will skepticism. But it can also be supported without reference to the free will issue, since retributivism faces ethical challenges in its own right. In past versions of the account I’ve emphasized (...)
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  13. A Hard-Line Reply to the Multiple-Case Manipulation Argument.Derk Pereboom - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77 (1):160-170.
  14.  9
    Robust Nonreductive Materialism.Derk Pereboom - 2002 - Journal of Philosophy 99 (10):499.
  15.  2
    Living Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2002 - The Journal of Ethics 6 (3):305-309.
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  16.  46
    A Defense of Free Will Skepticism: Replies to Commentaries by Victor Tadros, Saul Smilansky, Michael McKenna, and Alfred R. Mele on Free Will, Agency, and Meaning in Life.Derk Pereboom - 2017 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 11 (3):617-636.
    This paper features Derk Pereboom’s replies to commentaries by Victor Tadros and Saul Smilansky on his non-retributive, incapacitation-focused proposal for treatment of dangerous criminals; by Michael McKenna on his manipulation argument against compatibilism about basic desert and causal determination; and by Alfred R. Mele on his disappearing agent argument against event-causal libertarianism.
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  17. The Metaphysics of Irreducibility.Derk Pereboom & Hilary Kornblith - 1991 - Philosophical Studies 63 (August):125-45.
    During the 'sixties and 'seventies, Hilary Putnam, Jerry Fodor, and Richard Boyd, among others, developed a type of materialism that eschews reductionist claims.1 In this view, explana- tions, natural kinds, and properties in psychology do not reduce to counterparts in more basic sciences, such as neurophysiology or physics. Nevertheless, all token psychological entities-- states, processes, and faculties--are wholly constituted of physical entities, ultimately out of entities over which microphysics quantifies. This view quickly became the standard position in philosophy of mind, (...)
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  18.  54
    Alternative Possibilities and Causal Histories.Derk Pereboom - 2000 - Philosopical Perspectives 14 (s14):119-138.
  19. Living Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2003 - Mind 112 (446):375-378.
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  20. Free Will, Love and Anger.Derk Pereboom - 2009 - Ideas Y Valores 58 (141):169-189.
    I have argued we are not free in the sense required for moral responsibility, while at the same time a conception of life without this type of free will would not be devastating to morality or to our sense of meaning in life, and in certain respects it may even be beneficial (cf. Pereboom 2001). In ..
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  21. Living Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2003 - Philosophical Quarterly 53 (211):308-310.
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  22. Defending Hard Incompatibilism Again.Derk Pereboom - 2008 - In Nick Trakakis & Daniel Cohen (eds.), Essays on Free Will and Moral Responsibility. Cambridge Scholars Press. pp. 1--33.
     
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  23. The Disappearing Agent Objection to Event-Causal Libertarianism.Derk Pereboom - 2012 - Philosophical Studies (1):1-11.
    The question I raise is whether Mark Balaguer’s event-causal libertarianism can withstand the disappearing agent objection. The concern is that with the causal role of the events antecedent to a decision already given, nothing settles whether the decision occurs, and so the agent does not settle whether the decision occurs. Thus it would seem that in this view the agent will not have the control in making decisions required for moral responsibility. I examine whether Balaguer’s position has the resources to (...)
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  24. Kant on Transcendental Freedom.Derk Pereboom - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (3):537-567.
    Transcendental freedom consists in the power of agents to produce actions without being causally determined by antecedent conditions, nor by their natures, in exercising this power. Kant contends that we cannot establish whether we are actually or even possibly free in this sense. He claims only that our conception of being transcendentally free involves no inconsistency, but that as a result the belief that we have this freedom meets a pertinent standard of minimal credibility. For the rest, its justification depends (...)
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  25. Traditional and Experimental Approaches to Free Will and Moral Responsibility.Gunnar Björnsson & Derk Pereboom - 2016 - In Justin Sytsma & Wesley Buckwalter (eds.), Companion to Experimental Philosophy. Blackwell. pp. 142-57.
    Examines the relevance of empirical studies of responsibility judgments for traditional philosophical concerns about free will and moral responsibility. We argue that experimental philosophy is relevant to the traditional debates, but that setting up experiments and interpreting data in just the right way is no less difficult than negotiating traditional philosophical arguments. Both routes are valuable, but so far neither promises a way to secure significant agreement among the competing parties. To illustrate, we focus on three sorts of issues. For (...)
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  26. Further Thoughts About a Frankfurt-Style Argument.Derk Pereboom - 2009 - Philosophical Explorations 12 (2):109 – 118.
    I have presented a Frankfurt-style argument (Pereboom 2000, 2001, 2003) against the requirement of robust alternative possibilities for moral responsibility that features an example, Tax Evasion , in which an agent is intuitively morally responsible for a decision, has no robust alternative possibilities, and is clearly not causally determined to make the decision. Here I revise the criterion for robustness in response to suggestions by Dana Nelkin, Jonathan Vance, and Kevin Timpe, and I respond to objections to the argument by (...)
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  27.  40
    Free Will Skepticism and Criminal Punishment.Derk Pereboom - 2013 - In Thomas A. Nadelhoffer (ed.), The Future of Punishment. Oup Usa. pp. 49.
  28. Living Without Free Will: The Case for Hard Incompatibilism.Derk Pereboom - 2002 - In Robert H. Kane (ed.), Journal of Ethics. Oxford University Press. pp. 477-488.
  29.  76
    Frankfurt Examples, Derivative Responsibility, and the Timing Objection1.Derk Pereboom - 2012 - Philosophical Issues 22 (1):298-315.
  30.  87
    A Compatibilist Account of the Epistemic Conditions on Rational Deliberation.Derk Pereboom - 2008 - The Journal of Ethics 12 (3-4):287 - 306.
    A traditional concern for determinists is that the epistemic conditions an agent must satisfy to deliberate about which of a number of distinct actions to perform threaten to conflict with a belief in determinism and its evident consequences. I develop an account of the sort that specifies two epistemic requirements, an epistemic openness condition and a belief in the efficacy of deliberation, whose upshot is that someone who believes in determinism and its evident consequences can deliberate without inconsistent beliefs. I (...)
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  31.  49
    Reasons-Responsiveness, Alternative Possibilities, and Manipulation Arguments Against Compatibilism: Reflections on John Martin Fischer's My Way.Derk Pereboom - 2006 - Philosophical Books 47 (3):198-212.
  32. Hard Incompatibilism and its Rivals.Derk Pereboom - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 144 (1):21 - 33.
    In this article I develop several responses to my co-authors of Four Views on Free Will. In reply to Manuel Vargas, I suggest a way to clarify his claim that our concepts of free will and moral responsibility should be revised, and I question whether he really proposes to revise the notion of basic desert at stake in the debate. In response to Robert Kane, I examine the role the rejection of Frankfurt-style arguments has in his position, and whether his (...)
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  33.  85
    Free Will Skepticism and Meaning in Life.Derk Pereboom - 2011 - In Robert Kane (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Free Will. Oxford University Press.
  34. Source Incompatibilism and Alternative Possibilities.Derk Pereboom - 2003 - In Michael S. McKenna & David Widerker (eds.), Freedom, Responsibility, and Agency: Essays on the Importance of Alternative Possibilities. Ashgate. pp. 184--199.
    The claim that moral responsibility for an action requires that the agent could have done otherwise is surely attractive. Moreover, it seems reasonable to contend that a requirement of this sort is not merely a necessary condition of little consequence, but that it plays a decisive role in explaining an agent's moral responsibility for an action. For if an agent is to be blameworthy for an action, it seems crucial that she could have done something to avoid this blameworthiness. If (...)
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  35. On Alfred Mele's Free Will and Luck.Derk Pereboom - 2007 - Philosophical Explorations 10 (2):163 – 172.
    I argue that agent-causal libertarianism has a strong initial rejoinder to Mele's luck argument against it, but that his claim that it has yet to be explained how agent-causation yields responsibility-conferring control has significant force. I suggest an avenue of response. Subsequently, I raise objections to Mele's criticisms of my four-case manipulation argument against compatibilism.
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  36.  59
    Theological Determinism and Divine Providence.Derk Pereboom - 2011 - In Ken Perszyk (ed.), Molinism: The Contemporary Debate. Oxford University Press.
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  37.  23
    On Carolina Sartorio’s Causation and Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (6):1535-1543.
    In this article I review the core elements of Carolina Sartorio’s actual causal sequence account of free will and moral responsibility, and propose two revisions. First, I suggest replacing the contested notion of absence causation by the relatively uncontroversial notion of causal explanation by absences. Second, I propose retaining explanation by unreduced dispositions, of which Sartorio appears to be wary. I then set out a response to her critical treatment of manipulation arguments against compatibilism. Lastly, I point out that Sartorio’s (...)
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  38.  27
    On Baker's Persons and Bodies. [REVIEW]Derk Pereboom - 2002 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 64 (3):615–622.
  39.  26
    Response to Dennett on Free Will Skepticism.Derk Pereboom - 2017 - Rivista Internazionale di Filosofia e Psicologia 8 (3):259-265.
    : What is at stake in the debate between those, such as Sam Harris and me, who contend that we would lack free will on the supposition that we are causally determined agents, and those that defend the claim that we might then retain free will, such as Daniel Dennett? I agree with Dennett that on the supposition of causal determination there would be robust ways in which we could shape, control, and cause our actions. But I deny that on (...)
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  40.  39
    Kant's Transcendental Arguments.Derk Pereboom - 2009 - In Edward Zalta (ed.), The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Stanford.
    Among Immanuel Kant's most influential contributionsto philosophy is his development of the transcendental argument. InKant's conception, an argument of this kind begins with a compellingpremise about our thought, experience, or knowledge, and then reasonsto a conclusion that is a substantive and unobvious presupposition andnecessary condition of this premise. The crucial steps in thisreasoning are claims to the effect that a subconclusion or conclusionis a presupposition and necessary condition of a premise. Such anecessary condition might be a logically necessary condition, butoften (...)
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  41.  78
    Optimistic Skepticism About Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2013 - In Paul Russell & Oisin Deery (eds.), The Philosophy of Free Will: Essential Readings From the Contemporary Debates. Oup Usa. pp. 421.
  42. Bats, Brain Scientists, and the Limitations of Introspection.Derk Pereboom - 1994 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 54 (2):315-29.
  43. The Rationalists: Critical Essays on Descartes, Spinoza, and Leibniz.Derk Pereboom (ed.) - 1999 - Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
    This book brings together thirteen articles on the most discussed thinkers in the rationalist movement: Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, and Malebranche. These articles address the topics in metaphysics and epistemology that figure most prominently in contemporary work on these philosophers. The articles have all been produced since 1980, and their authors are among the most respected in the field.
     
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  44. Free Will Skepticism and Bypassing.Gunnar Björnsson & Derk Pereboom - 2014 - In Walter Sinnott-Armstrong (ed.), Moral Psychology, Vol. 4. MIT Press. pp. 27–35.
    Discusses Eddy Nahmias' “Is Free Will an Illusion?”.
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  45. Exploring the Illusion of Free Will and Moral Responsibility.Susan Blackmore, Thomas W. Clark, Mark Hallett, John-Dylan Haynes, Ted Honderich, Neil Levy, Thomas Nadelhoffer, Shaun Nichols, Michael Pauen, Derk Pereboom, Susan Pockett, Maureen Sie, Saul Smilansky, Galen Strawson, Daniela Goya Tocchetto, Manuel Vargas, Benjamin Vilhauer & Bruce Waller - 2013 - Lexington Books.
    Exploring the Illusion of Free Will and Moral Responsibility is an edited collection of new essays by an internationally recognized line-up of contributors. It is aimed at readers who wish to explore the philosophical and scientific arguments for free will skepticism and their implications.
     
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  46.  4
    Defending Hard Incompatibilism.Derk Pereboom - 2005 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 29 (1):228-247.
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  47. Meaning in Life Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2002 - Philosophic Exchange 33 (1):19-34.
    In a recent article Gary Watson instructively distinguishes two faces or aspects of responsibility. The first is the self-disclosing sense, which is concerned centrally with aretaic or excellence-relevant evaluations of agents. An agent is responsible for an action in this respect when it is an action that is inescapably the agent’s own, if, as a declaration of her adopted ends, it expresses what the agent is about, her identity as an agent. An action for which the agent is responsible in (...)
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  48.  93
    Stoic Psychotherapy in Descartes and Spinoza.Derk Pereboom - 1994 - Faith and Philosophy 11 (4):592-625.
    The psychotherapeutic theories of Descartes and Spinoza are heavily influenced by Stoicism. Stoic psychotherapy has two central features. First, we have a remarkable degree of voluntary control over our passions, and we can and should exercise this control to keep ourselves from having any irrational passions at all. Second, the universe is determined by the providential divine will, and in any situation we can and should align ourselves with this divine will in order to achieve equanimity. Whereas Descartes largely endorses (...)
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  49. Free Will, Evil, and Divine Providence.Derk Pereboom - 2005 - In Andrew Dole & Andrew Chignell (eds.), God and the Ethics of Belief: New Essays in Philosophy of Religion. Cambridge University Press.
  50.  15
    Introduction.Derk Pereboom & Maureen Sie - 2013 - Philosophical Explorations 16 (2):97-100.
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