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  1. Excuse and Justification: What’s Explanation and Understanding Got to Do with It?Nigel Pleasants - 2021 - European Journal of Social Theory 24 (3):338-355.
    A well-worn French proverb pronounces ‘tout comprendre c’est tout pardonner’. Is forgiveness the inevitable consequence of social scientific understanding of the actions and lives of perpetrators of serious wrongdoing? Do social scientific explanations provide excuses or justifications for the perpetrators of the actions that the explanations purport to explain? In this essay, I seek clarification of these intertwined explanatory and moral questions.
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  • Free Will, Determinism and the “Problem” of Structure and Agency in the Social Sciences.Nigel Pleasants - 2019 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 49 (1):3-30.
    The so-called “problem” of structure and agency is clearly related to the philosophical problem of free will and determinism, yet the central philosophical issues are not well understood by theorists of structure and agency in the social sciences. In this article I draw a map of the available stances on the metaphysics of free will and determinism. With the aid of this map the problem of structure and agency will be seen to dissolve. The problem of structure and agency is (...)
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