The Main Problem with USC Libertarianism
Philosophical Studies 105: 107-127, 2001
11 Pages Posted: 20 Jan 2014 Last revised: 9 Jan 2015
Date Written: January 19, 2014
There are two reasons to think that determinism is incompatible with responsibility. The first is that determinism negates the ability to do otherwise. The second is that determinism negates "ultimate self-causation" – that is, an agent’s being the ultimately self-caused originator of her action. My article responds to the second reason. I argue that ultimate self-causation is metaphysically impossible. Therefore if "source incompatibilists" like Robert Kane are right that responsibility requires ultimate self-causation, then responsibility is metaphysically impossible.
Keywords: determinism, indeterminism, source incompatibilism, ultimate self-causation, USC libertarianism, responsibility, Robert Kane
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