Freedom and Free Will|
Fall 2018 not offered
This course is an introduction to problems about free will and freedom as they connect with topics in metaphysics. We will begin with debates about determinism and freedom. We will inquire into questions about whether there is free will, or whether determinism is compatible with free will. Is there a core self as the locus of free will? What notion of agent-causation is necessary for free will? The answers we give to these metaphysical questions will have ramifications for what account we can give of our responsibility and agency. We will explore further the impact of metaphysical freedom on our actions: What account of human psychology is necessary for free action? Is free action necessarily the most rational action? What is the significance of free will for our actions? Is it something we necessarily want? Why is it worth having? What role does bad "moral luck" play in mitigating our responsibility? How do uncontrollable addictions and compulsions factor into the free-will debate? If love and personal attachments are necessarily binding and unbreakable, are they compatible with being free?
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (PHIL)(PHIL-Social Jus)
Hume, Roderick Chisholm, Peter van Inwagen, Harry Frankfurt, Peter Strawson, Gary Watson's Free Will anthology, Susan Wolf, Bernard Williams, and Robert Kane:
Roderick Chisholm: HUMAN FREEDOM AND THE SELF [in Watson anthology]
Peter van Inwagen, AN ARGUMENT FOR INCOMPATIBILISM [Watson]
Harry Frankfurt, FREEDOM OF THE WILL AND THE CONCEPT OF A PERSON, ALTERNATE POSSIBILITIES AND MORAL RESPONSIBILITY, IDENTIFICATION AND WHOLEHEARTEDNESS
Gary Watson, FREE AGENCY [Watson]
Peter Strawson, FREEDOM AND RESENTMENT [Watson]
Susan Wolf, SANITY AND THE METAPHYSICS OF RESPONSIBILITY [Watson]
Thomas Nagel "Moral Luck" [Coursepack]
Bernard Williams, "Moral Luck" [coursepack]
Robert Kane, RESPONSIBILITY, LUCK, AND CHANCE: REFLECTIONS ON FREE WILL AND DETERMINISM [Watson].
|Examinations and Assignments: |
Two 5-page papers with mandatory a rewrite. One 10-page final paper. Students will also regularly be expected to submit short questions and opinion statements on the readings; these will not be graded, but will be used for classroom discussion.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
THIS SECTION IS A FIRST-YEAR SEMINAR (FYS) CLASS.
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