Agents, Causes, and Events: Essays on Indeterminism and Free Will

Paperback | February 1, 1995

EditorTimothy OConnor

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Many philosophers are persuaded by familiar arguments that free will is incompatible with causal determinism. Yet, notoriously, past attempts to articulate how the right type of indeterminism might secure the capacity for autonomous action have generally been regarded as either demonstrablyinadequate or irremediably obscure. This volume gathers together the most significant recent discussions concerning the prospects for devising a satisfactory indeterministic account of freedom of action. These essays give greater precision to traditional formulations of the problems associated withindeterministic accounts and to the range of theoretical avenues for pursuing resolutions. The first four essays set out different challenges (from both compatibilists and those skeptical of the possibility of free will) to the adequacy of standard indeterministic theories. The next seven essaysmeet one or more of these challenges. Each of the fundamental types of approach--simple indeterminism, causal indeterminism, and agent causation--is represented in these novel and sophisticated proposals. The collection finishes with two essays that debate whether compatibilism entails that freedomof choice is a comparatively rare phenomenon within an individual's life. Eloquently presenting some of the most compelling and accessible arguments surrounding this central philosophical issue, Agents, Causes, and Events makes a valuable contribution to courses in free will/action theory andmetaphysics.

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Many philosophers are persuaded by familiar arguments that free will is incompatible with causal determinism. Yet, notoriously, past attempts to articulate how the right type of indeterminism might secure the capacity for autonomous action have generally been regarded as either demonstrablyinadequate or irremediably obscure. This volum...

Timothy O'Connor is at Indiana University.

other books by Timothy OConnor

Format:PaperbackDimensions:28 pages, 9.21 × 6.1 × 0.91 inPublished:February 1, 1995Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195091574

ISBN - 13:9780195091571

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Table of Contents

INTRODUCTIONPart I. Problems for Indeterministic Accounts of Free Will1. Strawson/Libertarianism, Action and Self-Determination2. Nagel/The Problem of Autonomy3. Dennett/On Giving Libertarians What They Say They Want4. Double/Libertarianism and RationalityPart II. Indeterminism and Free Will: Contemporary Proposals5. Ginet/Reason and Explanation of Action: An Incompatibilist Account6. Chisholm/Agents, Causes and Events: The Problem of Free Will7. Nozik/Choice and Indeterminism8. Kane/Two Kinds of Incompatibilism9. Rowe/Two Concepts of Freedom10. O'Connor/Agent Causation11. Clarke/Toward a Credible Agent-Causal Account of Free WillPart III. Indeterminism and the Extent of Free Will12. Peter Van Inwagen/When is the Will Free?13. Fischer and Ravizza/When the Will is Free?

Editorial Reviews

"An immensely helpful collection for courses in the philosophy of mind and theory of action."--Robert Welshon, University of Colorado