On the Top‑Down Argument for the Ability to Do Otherwise

Erkenntnis (forthcoming)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

The Top-Down Argument for the ability to do otherwise aims at stablishing that humans can do otherwise in the sense that is relevant for debates about free will. It consists of two premises: first, we always need to answer the question of whether some phenomenon (such as the ability to do otherwise) exists by consulting our best scientific theories of the domain at issue. Second, our best scientific theories of human action presuppose that humans can do otherwise. This paper argues that this is not enough to establish the conclusion. The Top-Down Argument supports that humans can do otherwise in some sense. But it does not show that humans can do otherwise in the sense that is relevant for debates about free will. The paper then shows that the apparently best way to make the argument valid does not work.

Author's Profile

Leonhard Menges
University of Salzburg

Analytics

Added to PP
2022-11-23

Downloads
34 (#70,610)

6 months
34 (#30,729)

Historical graph of downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.
How can I increase my downloads?