Resisting Tracing's Siren Song

Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
Drunk drivers and other culpably incapacitated wrongdoers are often taken to pose a problem for reasons-responsiveness accounts of moral responsibility. These accounts predicate moral responsibility upon an agent having the capacities to perceive and act upon moral reasons, and the culpably incapacitated wrongdoers lack exactly those capacities at the time of their wrongdoing. Many reasons-responsiveness advocates thus expand their account of responsibility to include a tracing condition: The culpably incapacitated wrongdoer is blameworthy despite his incapacitation precisely because he is responsible for becoming incapacitated. As some skeptics have suggested, it is not clear that we need tracing. Here, however, I make a stronger case against tracing: I show that tracing gets things wrong. I consider a new sort of case, the case of the Odysseus agent, whose incapacitation is non-culpable (sometimes merely permissible and sometimes praiseworthy). Tracing would have us hold responsible and therefore blame unlucky Odysseus agents, Odysseus agents who commit a wrongdoing in the throes of their non-culpably induced incapacitation. But we should not hold these unlucky Odysseus agents responsible for their incapacitated wrongdoing. Because tracing gets these cases wrong, we should reject tracing.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
AGURTS
Upload history
Archival date: 2016-01-08
View other versions
Added to PP index
2016-01-08

Total views
409 ( #10,868 of 51,728 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
30 ( #19,664 of 51,728 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.