Foreknowledge requires determinism

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 107 (1):125-146 (2022)
  Copy   BIBTEX


There is a longstanding argument that purports to show that divine foreknowledge is inconsistent with human freedom to do otherwise. Proponents of this argument, however, have for some time been met with the following reply: the argument posits what would have to be a mysterious non-causal constraint on freedom. In this paper, I argue that this objection is misguided – not because after all there can indeed be non-causal constraints on freedom (as in Pike, Fischer, and Hunt), but because the success of the incompatibilist's argument does not require the real possibility of non-causal constraints on freedom. I contend that the incompatibilist's argument is best seen as showing that, given divine foreknowledge, something makes one unfree – and that this something is most plausibly identified, not with the foreknowledge itself, but with the causally deterministic factors that would have to be in place in order for there to be infallible foreknowledge in the first place.

Author's Profile

Patrick Todd
University of Edinburgh


Added to PP

902 (#15,281)

6 months
265 (#8,740)

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?