Responsibility and False Beliefs

In Carl Knight & Zofia Stemplowska (eds.), Justice and Responsibility. Oxford University Press (2011)
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An individual is agent-responsible for an outcome just in case it flows from her autonomous agency in the right kind of way. The topic of agent-responsibility is important because most people believe that agents should be held morally accountable (e.g., liable to punishment or having an obligation to compensate victims) for outcomes for which they are agent-responsible and because many other people (e.g., brute luck egalitarians) hold that agents should not be held accountable for outcomes for which they are not responsible. In this paper, I examine how false beliefs affect agent-responsibility. Unlike most of the papers in this collection, my paper is on the notion of agent-responsibility that many believe is relevant to justice and morality generally. I do not here address the question of how, if at all, justice and morality are sensitive to agent-responsibility

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Peter Vallentyne
University of Missouri, Columbia


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