Freedom and Self-Creation: Anselmian Libertarianism

Hardcover | November 1, 2015

byKatherin A. Rogers

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Katherin A. Rogers presents a new theory of free will, based on the thought of Anselm of Canterbury. We did not originally produce ourselves. Yet, according to Anselm, we can engage in self-creation, freely and responsibly forming our characters by choosing "from ourselves" (a se) between openoptions. Anselm introduces a new, agent-causal libertarianism which is parsimonious in that, unlike other agent-causal theories, it does not appeal to any unique and mysterious powers to explain how the free agent chooses. After setting out Anselm's original theory, Rogers defends and develops it by addressing a series of standard problems levelled against libertarianism. These include the problem of "internalism" - in that an agent is not the source of his original motivations, how can the structure of his choiceground his responsibility?; the problem of Frankfurt-style counterexamples - Do we really need open options to choose freely?; and the problem of luck - If nothing about an agent before he chooses explains his choice, then isn't the choice just dumb luck? (The Anselmian answer to this perennialcriticism is especially innovative, proposing that the critic has the relationship between choices and character exactly backwards.) Finally, as a theory about self-creation, Anselmian Libertarianism must defend the tracing thesis, the claim that an agent can be responsible for character-determinedchoices, if he, himself, formed his character through earlier a se choices. Throughout, the book defends and exemplifies a new methodological suggestion: someone debating free will ought to make his background world view explicit. In the on-going debate over the possibility of human freedom and responsibility, Anselmian Libertarianism constitutes a new and plausibleapproach.

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Katherin A. Rogers presents a new theory of free will, based on the thought of Anselm of Canterbury. We did not originally produce ourselves. Yet, according to Anselm, we can engage in self-creation, freely and responsibly forming our characters by choosing "from ourselves" (a se) between openoptions. Anselm introduces a new, agent-cau...

Katherin A. Rogers is a Professor in the Philosophy Department at the University of Delaware. She specializes in Medieval Philosophy (especially the work of St. Anselm of Canterbury), Philosophy of Religion, and the Metaphysics of Free Will. She has published in various journals including Faith and Philosophy, Religious Studies, and So...

other books by Katherin A. Rogers

Anselm on Freedom
Anselm on Freedom

Hardcover|Jun 19 2008

$110.50

Format:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.8 inPublished:November 1, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198743971

ISBN - 13:9780198743972

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. Why Not Compatibilism?: The Divine Controller Argument and a Wager2. Anselmian Libertarianism: Background and Voluntates3. Anselmian Libertarianism: A Parsimonious Agent-Causation4. Three Entailments5. Defending Anselmian Internalism6. Anselmian Alternatives and Frankfurt-style Counter-examples7. The Luck Problem: Part I--Probabilities and Possible Worlds8. The Luck Problem: Part II--The Locus of Responsibility9. The Tracing ProblemBibliography