Moral responsibility without free will




The issue of free-will is perhaps the most fundamental question in Philosophy. We hold ourselves and others accountable for our various successes and mishaps, yet determinists hold that we aren’t in control of our own actions. How can we make sense of this issue? Galen Strawson argues that whilst free will is impossible, we nonetheless feel compelled to hold on to our intuitions about moral responsibility. You arrive at a bakery. It’s the evening of a national holiday. You want to buy a cake with your last 10 dollars to round off the preparations you’ve already made. There’s only one thing left in the store — a 10-dollar cake.On the steps of the store, someone is shaking an Oxfam tin. You stop, and it seems quite clear to you — it surely is quite clear to you — that it is entirely up to you what you do next. You are — it seems — truly, radically, ultimately free to choose what to do, in such a way that you will be ultimately morally responsible for whatever you do choose. Fact: you can…

Originally appeared on iai News RSS feed Read More