- This pseudo-Paper is intended as the mechanism to record time spent on the Note 'Free Will1' during my Thesis research, as from 2011.
- For the actual time recorded, click on "Paper Statistics" above.
Write-up2 (as at 27/06/2020 16:20:38): Free Will
- This may be somewhat peripheral to my concerns, unless free-will should prove essential to our concept of a Person4, as is alleged in "Frankfurt (Harry) - Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person".
- The idea that free will may be essential to the topic of personal identity stems initially from Locke’s view that personhood is a forensic property5 of the individual that allows for praise or blame. Without free will, praise or blame is said to be out of place.
- Maybe Dennett’s views in
→ "Dennett (Daniel) - Freedom Evolves" and
→ "Dennett (Daniel) - Elbow Room - The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting"
will be of interest, following on from
→ "Dennett (Daniel) - Conditions of Personhood".
- See also the Aeon discussion in "Dennett (Daniel) & Caruso (Gregg D.) - Just deserts".
- Gregg D. Caruso has written extensively in this area claiming – contra Dennett – that none of us has free will because all we do is down to luck: either constitutive luck – from our genes and initial family situation – or present luck – from our environment. Consequently, Caruso claims that – rather than blame – criminals need therapy6.
- Free will also features in discussions of backward Time Travel7.
- The topic of future contingents was covered in my essay on Aristotle’s Sea Battle8. I’ve not repeated the associated literature here.
- Nor will I have time to enter into the debates on the compatibility or otherwise of free will and determinism, though I’ve included some items involving George F.R. Ellis.
- Nor can I cover here the interesting topic of the “Free Will Defence9” in theodicy to the problem of apparent gratuitous suffering, though relevant items will appear in the categorised reading-list below.
- A survey of fairly contemporary philosophers’ stances on the Free Will debate appear in "Bourget (David) & Chalmers (David) - The PhilPapers Surveys: What Do Philosophers Believe?".
- For a Page of Links10 to this Note, Click here.
- Works on this topic that I’ve actually read11 include the following:-
- "Ayer (A.J.) - Fatalism", Ayer
- "Cave (Stephen) - The free-will scale", Cave
- "Churchland (Patricia) - Free Will", Churchland
- "Crane (Tim) & Farkas (Katalin) - Freedom and Determinism: Introduction", Crane
- "Dresser (Sam) - How Camus and Sartre split up over the question of how to be free", Dresser
- "Dupre (John) - The Solution to the Problem of the Freedom of the Will", Dupre
- "Ellis (George F.R.), Etc - From Chaos to Free Will", Ellis
- "Ellis (George F.R.), Etc - From Chaos to Free Will: Further Comments & Responses", Ellis
- "Frankfurt (Harry) - Alternate Possibilities and Moral Responsibility", Frankfurt
- "Frankfurt (Harry) - Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person", Frankfurt
- "Frith (Christopher D.) - Our illusory sense of agency has a deeply important social purpose", Frith
- "Holt (James) - Target Article: Daniel M Wegner: The Illusion of Conscious Will 2002 MIT Press", Holt
- "Kagan (Shelly) - Arguments for the existence of the soul, Part III: Free will and near-death experiences", Kagan
- "Lewis (David) - Are We Free to Break the Laws", Lewis
- "Marshall (Richard) & Churchland (Patricia) - Patricia Churchland: Causal Machines", Marshall & Churchland
- "Nagel (Thomas) - Freedom", Nagel
- "Nagel (Thomas) - Moral Luck", Nagel
- "Pink (Thomas) - Reason and Agency", Pink
- "Schopenhauer (Arthur) - Prize Essay on the Freedom of the Will (extract)", Schopenhauer
- "Smith (Quentin) - Time, Change and Freedom: Introduction", Smith
- "Strawson (Peter) - Freedom and Resentment", Strawson
- "Tessman (Lisa) - Sometimes giving a person a choice is an act of terrible cruelty", Tessman
- "Van Inwagen (Peter) - The Incompatibility of Free Will and Determinism", Van Inwagen
- "Von Wachter (Daniel) - Free Agents as Cause", von Wachter
- "Watson (Gary) - Free Agency", Watson
- "Williams (Bernard) - Internal Reasons and the Obscurity of Blame", Williams
- A further reading list might start with12:-
- "Caruso (Gregg D.) - Free Will Skepticism and Criminal Behavior: A Public Health-Quarantine Model", Caruso
- "Dennett (Daniel) - Elbow Room - The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting", Dennett
- "Dennett (Daniel) - Freedom Evolves", Dennett
- "Doyle (Robert O.) - Free Will: The Scandal in Philosophy", Doyle
- "Earman (John) - A Primer On Determinism", Earman
- "Gazzaniga (Michael S.) - Who's in Charge? Free Will and the Science of the Brain", Gazzaniga
- "Honderich (Ted) - How Free are You - The Determinism Problem", Honderich
- "Iredale (Mathew) - Towards a Scientific Conception of Free Will", Iredale
- "Murphy (Nancey) & Brown (Warren) - Did My Neurons Make Me Do It?", Murphy& Brown
- "Murphy (Nancey), O'Connor (Timothy) & Ellis (George F.R.) - Downward Causation and the Neurobiology of Free Will", Murphy, O’Connor & Ellis
- "O'Connor (Timothy) - Persons and Causes: The Metaphysics of Free Will", O’Connor
- "Pink (Thomas) - The Psychology of Freedom", Pink
- "Rose (Steven) - Lifelines - Biology, Freedom, Determinism", Rose
→ "Rose (Steven) - Précis of 'Lifelines: Biology, Freedom, Determinism'"
- "Rovane (Carol) - The Bounds of Agency: An Essay in Revisionary Metaphysics", Rovane
- "Smith (Quentin) & Oaklander (L. Nathan) - Time, Change and Freedom: An Introduction to Metaphysics", Smith & Oaklander
- "Van Inwagen (Peter) - An Essay on Free Will", Van Inwagen
- "Watson (Gary), Ed. - Free Will: Oxford Readings in Philosophy", Watson
- "Wegner (Daniel) - The Illusion of Conscious Will", Wegner
→ "Wegner (Daniel) - Precis and Peer Review of 'The Illusion of Conscious Will'"
- This is mostly a place-holder13.
- This is the write-up as it was when this Abstract was last output, with text as at the timestamp indicated (27/06/2020 16:20:38).
- Link to Latest Write-Up Note.
- There is no doubt some truth in this.
- However, not all wrong-doers had bad starts in life, and I suspect that many who did would prefer to take the punishment if the alternative is the real loss of freedom in a rehabilitation programme.
- Compare the Soviet view that dissidents are insane and need curing.
- I’ve restricted the list almost exclusively to books, and not all of those in the categorised reading list are included!
Text Colour Conventions (see disclaimer)
- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020