Razian Responsibility

21 Pages Posted: 24 Jan 2014 Last revised: 30 Jan 2014

Manuel Vargas

Philosophy Department, UCSD

Date Written: 2014


This essay considers two aspects of Joseph Raz's recent work: (1) his theory of responsibility, arising out his reflections on something he calls "our Being in the World," and (2) the methodological presumptions that guide his account. On the matter of responsibility, his notion of "domains of secure competence" is suggestive but unclear. Natural regimentations of the idea suggest a host of problems in the specification of competence, and whether the notion is to be understood subjectively or third-personally. On the matter of methodology, Raz's approach gives rise to some serious concerns, including (1) whether armchair philosophical reflection is the best way to generate an account, as he aims to, of essential features of experience, and (2) how to square his approach with accounts of responsibility, normativity, and rationality rooted in non-experiential but predictive and explanatorily valuable accounts of these matters.

Keywords: Joseph Raz, jurisprudence, philosophy of law, responsibility

Suggested Citation

Vargas, Manuel, Razian Responsibility (2014). Jurisprudence, 2014, Forthcoming; Univ. of San Francisco Law Research Paper No. 2014-04. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2383576

Manuel Vargas (Contact Author)

Philosophy Department, UCSD ( email )

United States

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