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  1. Implanted Desires, Self-Formation, and Blame.Matthew Talbert - 2009 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 3 (2):1-18.
    Those who advocate a “historicist” outlook on moral responsibility often hold that people who unwillingly acquire corrupt dispositions are not blameworthy for the wrong actions that issue from these dispositions; this contention is frequently supported by thought experiments involving instances of forced psychological manipulation that seem to call responsibility into question. I argue against this historicist perspective and in favor of the conclusion that the process by which a person acquires values and dispositions is largely irrelevant to moral responsibility. While (...)
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  • Punishment and Bad Upbringing.Peter Chau - 2018 - Criminal Justice Ethics 37 (2):103-121.
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  • Moral Responsibility, Manipulation Arguments, and History: Assessing the Resilience of Nonhistorical Compatibilism. [REVIEW]Michael McKenna - 2012 - The Journal of Ethics 16 (2):145-174.
    Manipulation arguments for incompatibilism all build upon some example or other in which an agent is covertly manipulated into acquiring a psychic structure on the basis of which she performs an action. The featured agent, it is alleged, is manipulated into satisfying conditions compatibilists would take to be sufficient for acting freely. Such an example used in the context of an argument for incompatibilism is meant to elicit the intuition that, due to the pervasiveness of the manipulation, the agent does (...)
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  • Manipulation and constitutive luck.Taylor W. Cyr - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (8):2381-2394.
    I argue that considerations pertaining to constitutive luck undermine historicism—the view that an agent’s history can determine whether or not she is morally responsible. The main way that historicists have motivated their view is by appealing to certain cases of manipulation. I argue, however, that since agents can be morally responsible for performing some actions from characters with respect to which they are entirely constitutively lucky, and since there is no relevant difference between these agents and agents who have been (...)
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  • Responsibility, Reflection, and Rational Ability.Dana Kay Nelkin - 2020 - The Monist 103 (3):294-311.
    This paper takes as its starting point the thesis that one is responsible for one’s actions insofar as one has the ability to act for good reasons. Such a view faces a challenge: it is plausible that only beings with the ability to reflect are responsible agents, and yet it seems that not only is it possible to act for reasons without reflecting, it seems to happen quite frequently. Thus, advocates of the rational-ability view of responsibility must either reject as (...)
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  • Responsibility and the Limits of Conversation.Manuel R. Vargas - 2016 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 10 (2):221-240.
    Both legal and moral theorists have offered broadly “communicative” theories of criminal and moral responsibility. According to such accounts, we can understand the nature of responsibility by appealing to the idea that responsibility practices are in some fundamental sense expressive, discursive, or communicative. In this essay, I consider a variety of issues in connections with this family of views, including its relationship to free will, the theory of exemptions, and potential alternatives to the communicative model. Focusing on Michael McKenna’s Conversation (...)
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  • Free Will, Self‐Creation, and the Paradox of Moral Luck.Kristin M. Mickelson - 2019 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 43 (1):224-256.
    How is the problem of free will related to the problem of moral luck? In this essay, I answer that question and outline a new solution to the paradox of moral luck, the source-paradox solution. This solution both explains why the paradox arises and why moral luck does not exist. To make my case, I highlight a few key connections between the paradox of moral luck and two related problems, namely the problem of free will and determinism and the paradox (...)
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  • Autonomy, Rationality, and Contemporary Bioethics.Jonathan Pugh - 2020 - Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
    Personal autonomy is often lauded as a key value in contemporary Western bioethics. Though the claim that there is an important relationship between autonomy and rationality is often treated as uncontroversial in this sphere, there is also considerable disagreement about how we should cash out the relationship. In particular, it is unclear whether a rationalist view of autonomy can be compatible with legal judgments that enshrine a patient's right to refuse medical treatment, regardless of whether the reasons underpinning the choice (...)
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  • Counterfactuals of Freedom and the Luck Objection to Libertarianism.Robert J. Hartman - 2017 - Journal of Philosophical Research 42 (1):301-312.
    Peter van Inwagen famously offers a version of the luck objection to libertarianism called the ‘Rollback Argument.’ It involves a thought experiment in which God repeatedly rolls time backward to provide an agent with many opportunities to act in the same circumstance. Because the agent has the kind of freedom that affords her alternative possibilities at the moment of choice, she performs different actions in some of these opportunities. The upshot is that whichever action she performs in the actual-sequence is (...)
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  • Manipulation Arguments and the Standing to Blame.Matt King - 2015 - Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 9 (1):1-20.
    The majority of recent work on the moral standing to blame (the idea that A may be unable to legitimately blame B despite B being blameworthy) has focused on blamers who themselves are blameworthy. This is unfortunate, for there is much to learn about the standing to blame once we consider a broader range of cases. Doing so reveals that challenged standing is more expansive than previously acknowledged, and accounts that have privileged the fact that the blamers are themselves morally (...)
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  • Authentic Springs of Action and Obligation.Ishtiyaque Haji - 2008 - The Journal of Ethics 12 (3-4):239 - 261.
    What is the connection between action that is caused by inauthentic antecedent springs of action, such as surreptitiously engineered-in desires and beliefs, and moral obligation? If, for example, an agent performs an action that derives from such antecedent springs can it be that the agent is not obligated to perform this action owing to the inauthenticity of its causal antecedents? I defend an affirmative response, assuming that we morally ought to bring about the states of affairs that occur in the (...)
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  • Manipulation, Compatibilism, and Moral Responsibility.Alfred R. Mele - 2008 - The Journal of Ethics 12 (3-4):263-286.
    This article distinguishes among and examines three different kinds of argument for the thesis that moral responsibility and free action are each incompatible with the truth of determinism: straight manipulation arguments; manipulation arguments to the best explanation; and original-design arguments. Structural and methodological matters are the primary focus.
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  • Manipulators and Moral Standing.Benjamin Matheson - 2019 - Philosophia 47 (4):1197-1214.
    Manipulation arguments aim to show that compatibilism is false. Usually, they aim to undermine compatibilism by first eliciting the intuition that a manipulated agent is not morally responsible. Patrick Todd's (2012) Moral Standing Manipulation Argument instead aims to first elicit the intuition that a manipulator cannot blame her victim. Todd then argues that the best explanation for why a manipulator cannot blame her victim is that incompatibilism is true. In this paper, I present three lines of defence against this argument (...)
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  • Moral Responsibility, Luck, and Compatibilism.Taylor Cyr - 2019 - Erkenntnis 84 (1):193-214.
    In this paper, I defend a version of compatibilism against luck-related objections. After introducing the types of luck that some take to be problematic for moral responsibility, I consider and respond to two recent attempts to show that compatibilism faces the same problem of luck that libertarianism faces—present luck. I then consider a different type of luck—constitutive luck—and provide a new solution to this problem. One upshot of the present discussion is a reason to prefer a history-sensitive compatibilist account over (...)
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  • Freedom and Indoctrination.Michael Garnett - 2015 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 115 (2pt2):93-108.
    It has been alleged that compatibilists are committed to the view that agents act freely and responsibly even when subject to certain forms of radical manipulation. In this paper I identify and elucidate a form of compatibilist freedom, social autonomy, that is essential to understanding what is wrong with ordinary indoctrination and argue that it also holds the key to understanding what goes wrong in more fanciful manipulation cases.
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  • Manipulation.Patrick Todd - 2013 - International Encyclopedia of Ethics.
    At the most general level, "manipulation" refers one of many ways of influencing behavior, along with (but to be distinguished from) other such ways, such as coercion and rational persuasion. Like these other ways of influencing behavior, manipulation is of crucial importance in various ethical contexts. First, there are important questions concerning the moral status of manipulation itself; manipulation seems to be mor- ally problematic in ways in which (say) rational persuasion does not. Why is this so? Furthermore, the notion (...)
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  • Indirectly Free Actions, Libertarianism, and Resultant Moral Luck.Robert J. Hartman - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-20.
    Martin Luther affirms his theological position by saying “Here I stand. I can do no other.” Supposing that Luther’s claim is true, he lacks alternative possibilities at the moment of choice. Even so, many libertarians have the intuition that he is morally responsible for his action. One way to make sense of this intuition is to assert that Luther’s action is indirectly free, because his action inherits its freedom and moral responsibility from earlier actions when he had alternative possibilities and (...)
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  • Human Flourishing and Autonomy as Passive.Gerald Taylor - unknown
    Most prominent accounts of autonomy are active accounts, which means they hold that an agent can be autonomous with respect to a given action only if that agent has appropriately sanctioned that action. Active accounts, however, are vulnerable to the regress problem, since it seems that the required sanctioning actions are themselves just actions that must be sanctioned. Passive accounts hope to avoid the regress problem by eschewing the notion that autonomous action requires agential sanction, but face in its place (...)
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  • No Fats, Femmes, or Asians.Xiaofei Liu - 2015 - Moral Philosophy and Politics 2 (2).
    A frequent caveat in online dating profiles – “No fats, femmes, or Asians” – caused an LGBT activist to complain about the bias against Asians in the American gay community, which he called “racial looksism”. In response, he was asked that, if he himself would not date a fat person, why he should find others not dating Asians so upsetting. This response embodies a popular attitude that personal preferences or tastes are simply personal matters – they are not subject to (...)
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  • Selective Hard Compatibilism.Paul Russell - 2010 - In J. Campbell, M. O'Rourke & H. Silverstein (eds.), Action, Ethics and Responsibility: Topics in Contemporary Philosophy, Vol. 7. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. pp. 149-73.
    .... The strategy I have defended involves drawing a distinction between those who can and cannot legitimately hold an agent responsible in circumstances when the agent is being covertly controlled (e.g. through implantation processes). What is intuitively unacceptable, I maintain, is that an agent should be held responsible or subject to reactive attitudes that come from another agent who is covertly controlling or manipulating him. This places some limits on who is entitled to take up the participant stance in relation (...)
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  • Temporal Fictionalism for a Timeless World.Sam Baron, Kristie Miller & Jonathan Tallant - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    Current debate in the metaphysics of time ordinarily assumes that we should be realists about time. Recently, however, a number of physicists and philosophers of physics have proposed that time will play no role in a completed theory of quantum gravity. This paper defends fictionalism about temporal thought, on the supposition that our world is timeless. We argue that, in the face of timeless physical theories, realism about temporal thought is unsustainable: some kind of anti-realism must be adopted. We go (...)
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  • Answerability, Blameworthiness, and History.Daniel Miller - 2014 - Philosophia 42 (2):469-486.
    This paper focuses on a non-volitional account that has received a good deal of attention recently, Angela Smith's rational relations view. I argue that without historical conditions on blameworthiness for the non-voluntary non-volitionist accounts like Smith’s are (i) vulnerable to manipulation cases and (ii) fail to make sufficient room for the distinction between badness and blameworthiness. Towards the end of the paper I propose conditions aimed to supplement these deficiencies. The conditions that I propose are tailored to suit non-volitional accounts (...)
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  • Arguments for Incompatibilism.Kadri Vihvelin - 2003/2017 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Determinism is a claim about the laws of nature: very roughly, it is the claim that everything that happens is determined by antecedent conditions together with the natural laws. Incompatibilism is a philosophical thesis about the relevance of determinism to free will: that the truth of determinism rules out the existence of free will. The incompatibilist believes that if determinism turned out to be true, it would also be true that we don't have, and have never had, free will. The (...)
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  • Merit, Fit, and Basic Desert.Daniel Haas - 2013 - Philosophical Explorations 16 (2):226-239.
    Basic desert is central to the dispute between compatibilists and incompatibilists over the four-case manipulation argument. I argue that there are two distinct ways of understanding the desert salient to moral responsibility; moral desert can be understood as a claim about fitting responses to an agent or as a claim about the merit of the agent. Failing to recognize this distinction has contributed to a stalemate between both sides. I suggest that recognizing these distinct approaches to moral desert will help (...)
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  • Choosing Freedom: Basic Desert and the Standpoint of Blame.Evan Tiffany - 2013 - Philosophical Explorations 16 (2):1-17.
    One can think of the traditional logic of blame as involving three intuitively plausible claims: blame is justified only if one is deserving of blame, one is deserving of blame only if one is relevantly in control of the relevant causal antecedents, and one is relevantly in control only if one has libertarian freedom. While traditional compatibilism has focused on rejecting either or both of the latter two claims, an increasingly common strategy is to deny the link between blame and (...)
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  • The Soft-Line Solution to Pereboom's Four-Case Argument.Kristin Demetriou - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (4):595-617.
    Derk Pereboom's Four-Case Argument is among the most famous and resilient manipulation arguments against compatibilism. I contend that its resilience is not a function of the argument's soundness but, rather, the ill-gotten gain from an ambiguity in the description of the causal relations found in the argument's foundational case. I expose this crucial ambiguity and suggest that a dilemma faces anyone hoping to resolve it. After a thorough search for an interpretation which avoids both horns of this dilemma, I conclude (...)
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  • Whose Argumentative Burden, Which Incompatibilist Arguments?—Getting the Dialectic Right.Michael McKenna - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (3):429-443.
    Kadri Vihvelin has recently argued that between compatibilists and incompatibilists, the incompatibilists have a greater dialectical burden than compatibilists. According to her, both must show that free will is possible, but beyond this the incompatibilists must also show that no deterministic worlds are free will worlds. Thus, according to Vihvelin, so long as it is established that free will is possible, all the compatibilist must do is show that the incompatibilists' arguments are ineffective. I resist Vihvelin's assessment of the dialectical (...)
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  • Agency, Teleological Control and Robust Causation.Marius Usher - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (2):302-324.
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, EarlyView.
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  • In Defense of Hard-Line Replies to the Multiple-Case Manipulation Argument.Daniel Haas - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (3):797-811.
    I defend a hard-line reply to Derk Pereboom’s four-case manipulation argument. Pereboom accuses compatibilists who take a hard-line reply to his manipulation argument of adopting inappropriate initial attitudes towards the cases central to his argument. If Pereboom is correct he has shown that a hard-line response is inadequate. Fortunately for the compatibilist, Pereboom’s list of appropriate initial attitudes is incomplete and at least one of the initial attitudes he leaves out provides room for a revised hard-line reply to be successfully (...)
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  • Historicism, Non-Historicism, or a Mix?Ishtiyaque Haji - 2013 - The Journal of Ethics 17 (3):185-204.
    This paper revisits the issue of whether responsibility is essentially historical. Roughly, the leading question here is this: Do ways in which we can acquire pertinent antecedents of action, such as beliefs, desires, and values, have an essential bearing on whether we are responsible for actions that are suitably related to these antecedents? I argue, first, that Michael McKenna’s interesting case for nonhistoricism is indecisive, and, second, his brand of modest historicism, while highly insightful, yields results concerning responsibility that ought (...)
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  • Moral Responsibility, Manipulation, and Minutelings.Alfred R. Mele - 2013 - The Journal of Ethics 17 (3):153-166.
    This article explores the significance of agents’ histories for directly free actions and actions for which agents are directly morally responsible. Candidates for relevant compatibilist historical constraints discussed by Michael McKenna and Alfred Mele are assessed, as is the bearing of manipulation on free action and moral responsibility.
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  • Moral Responsibility and History Revisited.Alfred R. Mele - 2008 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 12 (5):463 - 475.
    Compatibilists about determinism and moral responsibility disagree with one another about the bearing of agents’ histories on whether or not they are morally responsible for some of their actions. Some stories about manipulated agents prompt such disagreements. In this article, I call attention to some of the main features of my own “history-sensitive” compatibilist proposal about moral responsibility, and I argue that arguments advanced by Michael McKenna and Manuel Vargas leave that proposal unscathed.
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  • Moral Responsibility and Agents' Histories.Alfred Mele - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 142 (2):161 - 181.
    To what extent should an analysis of an agent’s being morally responsible for an action that he performed—especially a compatibilist analysis of this—be sensitive to the agent’s history? In this article, I give the issue a clearer focus than it tends to have in the literature, I lay some groundwork for an attempt to answer the question, and I motivate a partial but detailed answer.
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  • A Challenge for Soft Line Replies to Manipulation Cases.Gerald K. Harrison - 2010 - Philosophia 38 (3):555-568.
    Cases involving certain kinds of manipulation seem to challenge compatibilism about responsibility-grounding free will. To deal with such cases many compatibilists give what has become known as a ‘soft line’ reply. In this paper I present a challenge to the soft line reply. I argue that any relevant case involving manipulation—and to which a compatibilist might wish to give a soft line reply—can be transformed into one supporting a degree of moral responsibility through the addition of libertarian elements (such as (...)
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  • Putting the Lie on the Control Condition for Moral Responsibility.Michael McKenna - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 139 (1):29 - 37.
    In “Control, Responsibility, and Moral Assessment” Angela Smith defends her nonvoluntarist theory of moral responsibility against the charge that any such view is shallow because it cannot capture the depth of judgments of responsibility. Only voluntarist positions can do this since only voluntarist positions allow for control. I argue that Smith is able to deflect the voluntarists’ criticism, but only with further resources. As a voluntarist, I also concede that Smith’s thesis has force, and I close with a compromise position, (...)
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  • The Soft-Line Solution to Pereboom's Four-Case Argument.Kristin Mickelson - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (4):595-617.
    Derk Pereboom's Four-Case Argument is among the most famous and resilient manipulation arguments against compatibilism. I contend that its resilience is not a function of the argument's soundness but, rather, the ill-gotten gain from an ambiguity in the description of the causal relations found in the argument's foundational case. I expose this crucial ambiguity and suggest that a dilemma faces anyone hoping to resolve it. After a thorough search for an interpretation which avoids both horns of this dilemma, I conclude (...)
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  • Luck and History‐Sensitive Compatibilism.Neil Levy - 2009 - Philosophical Quarterly 59 (235):237-251.
    Libertarianism seems vulnerable to a serious problem concerning present luck, because it requires indeterminism somewhere in the causal chain leading to directly free action. Compatibilism, in contrast, is thought to be free of this problem, as not requiring indeterminism in the causal chain. I argue that this view is false: compatibilism is subject to a problem of present luck. This is less of a problem for compatibilism than for libertarianism. However, its effects are just as devastating for one kind of (...)
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  • Luck and Manipulation Cases: A Response to Professor Haji.Neil Levy - 2015 - Dialogue 54 (4):633-646.
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  • Capacities and Counterfactuals: A Reply to Haji and McKenna.Neil Levy - 2012 - Dialectica 66 (4):607-620.
    In a recent paper, Ishtiyaque Haji and Michael McKenna argue that my attack on Frankfurt-style cases fails. I had argued that we cannot be confident that agents in these cases retain their responsibility-underwriting capacities, because what capacities an agent has can depend on features of the world external to her, including merely counterfactual interveners. Haji and McKenna argue that only when an intervention is actual does the agent gain or lose a capacity. Here I demonstrate that this claim is false: (...)
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  • Modest Libertarianism and Clandestine Control.Gerald K. Harrison - 2008 - Dialectica 62 (4):495-507.
    Cases involving clandestine manipulation pose a significant challenge to compatibilist conceptions of free will. But compatibilists often argue that they are not alone and that modest libertarian conceptions of free will are also susceptible to the problem. I take issue with this claim. I argue that agent-causal libertarian views are not susceptible to the problem. I then argue that the compatibilist cannot cite a relevant difference between agent-causal libertarian views and modest libertarian views. Therefore from a compatibilist's perspective modest libertarian (...)
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  • Disenabling Levy's Frankfurt-Style Enabling Cases.Ishtiyaque Haji & Michael Mckenna - 2011 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 92 (3):400-414.
    Recently, Neil Levy has proposed that an agent can acquire freedom-relevant agential abilities by virtue of the conditions in which she finds herself, and in this way, can be thought of as partially constituted by those conditions. This can be so even if the agent is completely ignorant of the relevant environmental conditions, and even if these conditions play no causal role in what the agent does. Drawing upon these resources, Levy argues that Frankfurt-style examples are not cogent. In this (...)
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  • Freedom, Creativity, and Manipulation.Eric Christian Barnes - 2015 - Noûs 49 (3):560-588.
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  • Recent Work on Free Will and Moral Responsibility.Neil Levy & Michael McKenna - 2009 - Philosophy Compass 4 (1):96-133.
    In this article we survey six recent developments in the philosophical literature on free will and moral responsibility: (1) Harry Frankfurt's argument that moral responsibility does not require the freedom to do otherwise; (2) the heightened focus upon the source of free actions; (3) the debate over whether moral responsibility is an essentially historical concept; (4) recent compatibilist attempts to resurrect the thesis that moral responsibility requires the freedom to do otherwise; (5) the role of the control condition in free (...)
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  • Compatibilism.Michael McKenna - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Traction Without Tracing: A Solution for Control‐Based Accounts of Moral Responsibility.Matt King - 2014 - European Journal of Philosophy 22 (3):463-482.
    Control-based accounts of moral responsibility face a familiar problem. There are some actions which look like obvious cases of responsibility but which appear equally obviously to lack the requisite control. Drunk-driving cases are canonical instances. The familiar solution to this problem is to appeal to tracing. Though the drunk driver isn't in control at the time of the crash, this is because he previously drank to excess, an action over which he did plausibly exercise the requisite control. Tracing seeks to (...)
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  • Modest Libertarianism and Clandestine Control.Gerald K. Harrison - 2008 - Dialectica 62 (4):495-507.
    Cases involving clandestine manipulation pose a significant challenge to compatibilist conceptions of free will. But compatibilists often argue that they are not alone and that modest libertarian conceptions of free will are also susceptible to the problem. I take issue with this claim. I argue that agent‐causal libertarian views are not susceptible to the problem. I then argue that the compatibilist cannot cite a relevant difference between agent‐causal libertarian views and modest libertarian views. Therefore from a compatibilist's perspective modest libertarian (...)
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  • Moral Responsibility and Agents’ Histories.Alfred Mele - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 142 (2):161-181.
    To what extent should an analysis of an agent’s being morally responsible for an action that he performed—especially a compatibilist analysis of this—be sensitive to the agent’s history? In this article, I give the issue a clearer focus than it tends to have in the literature, I lay some groundwork for an attempt to answer the question, and I motivate a partial but detailed answer.
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  • Moral Responsibility.Andrew Eshleman - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    When a person performs or fails to perform a morally significant action, we sometimes think that a particular kind of response is warranted. Praise and blame are perhaps the most obvious forms this reaction might take. For example, one who encounters a car accident may be regarded as worthy of praise for having saved a child from inside the burning car, or alternatively, one may be regarded as worthy of blame for not having used one's mobile phone to call for (...)
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  • Defending Nonhistorical Compatibilism: A Reply to Haji and Cuypers1.Michael McKenna - 2012 - Philosophical Issues 22 (1):264-280.
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