Free Will and the Divergence Problem

Annals of the Japan Association for Philosophy of Science 23:1-18 (2015)
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This paper presents what the authors call the ‘divergence problem’ regarding choosing between different future possibilities. As is discussed in the first half, the central issue of the problem is the difficulty of temporally locating the ‘active cause’ on the modal divergent diagram. In the second half of this paper, we discuss the ‘second-person freedom’ which is, strictly, neither compatibilist negative freedom nor incompatibilist positive freedom. The divergence problem leads us to two hypothetical views (i.e. the view of single-line determination and that of one-off chance), and these views bring humans closer to the afree side – i.e. outside of the contrast between being free and being unfree. The afree side is greatly different from the ordinary human side. This paper tries to secure the second-person freedom as a substitute for the ordinary human freedom while preventing the divergence problem from arising.

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