Free Will, Agency, and Meaning in Life

Hardcover | March 7, 2014

byDerk Pereboom

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Derk Pereboom articulates and defends an original conception of moral responsibility. He argues that if determinism were true we would not be morally responsible in the key basic - desert sense at issue in the free will debate, but that we would also lack this kind of moral responsibility ifindeterminism were true and the causes of our actions were exclusively states or events. It is possible that if we were undetermined agent - causes - if we as substances had the power to cause decisions without being causally determined to cause them - we would have this kind of free will. Butalthough our being undetermined agent causes has not been ruled out as a coherent possibility, it's not credible given our best physical theories. Pereboom then contends that a conception of life without the free will required for moral responsibility in the basic-desert sense would neverthelessallow for a different, forward-looking conception of moral responsibility. He also argues that our lacking this sort of free will would not jeopardize our sense of ourselves as agents capable of rational deliberation, that it is compatible with adequate measures for dealing with crime and other threatening behavior, and that it allows for a robust sense of achievement andmeaning in life. Pereboom's arguments for this position are reconfigured relative to those presented in Living without Free Will (2001), important objections to these arguments are answered, and the development of the positive view is significantly embellished.

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Derk Pereboom articulates and defends an original conception of moral responsibility. He argues that if determinism were true we would not be morally responsible in the key basic - desert sense at issue in the free will debate, but that we would also lack this kind of moral responsibility ifindeterminism were true and the causes of our...

Derk Pereboom is Professor of Philosophy at Cornell University. He is the author of Living Without Free Will (Cambridge 2001), Consciousness and the Prospects of Physicalism (Oxford 2011), and of articles on free will and moral responsibility, philosophy of mind, and the history of modern philosophy, especially Immanuel Kant.

other books by Derk Pereboom

Free Will: a contemporary introduction
Free Will: a contemporary introduction

Paperback|Jul 8 2016

$53.31 online$55.90list price
Living without Free Will
Living without Free Will

Kobo ebook|May 1 1997

$54.59 online$70.87list price(save 22%)
see all books by Derk Pereboom
Format:HardcoverDimensions:240 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.01 inPublished:March 7, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199685517

ISBN - 13:9780199685516

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction1. Defending a Source View2. Problems for Event-Causal and Non-Causal Libertarianisms3. The Prospects for Agent Causal Libertarianism4. A Manipulation Argument against Compatibilism5. Free Will Skepticism and Rational Deliberation6. Blame without Basic Desert7. Free Will Skepticism and Criminal Behavior8. Personal Relationships and Meaning in LifeBibliography