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Taylor W. Cyr [15]Taylor Cyr [5]
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Taylor W. Cyr
Samford University
  1. Manipulation Arguments and Libertarian Accounts of Free Will.Taylor W. Cyr - 2020 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 6 (1):57-73.
    In response to the increasingly popular manipulation argument against compatibilism, some have argued that libertarian accounts of free will are vulnerable to parallel manipulation arguments, and thus manipulation is not uniquely problematic for compatibilists. The main aim of this article is to give this point a more detailed development than it has previously received. Prior attempts to make this point have targeted particular libertarian accounts but cannot be generalized. By contrast, I provide an appropriately modified manipulation that targets all libertarian (...)
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  2. Atemporalism and Dependence.Taylor W. Cyr - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 87 (2):149-164.
    It is widely thought that Atemporalism—the view that, because God is “outside” of time, he does not foreknow anything —constitutes a unique solution to the problem of freedom and foreknowledge. However, as I argue here, in order for Atemporalism to escape certain worries, the view must appeal to the dependence of God’s timeless knowledge on our actions. I then argue that, because it must appeal to such dependence, Atemporalism is crucially similar to the recent sempiternalist accounts proposed by Trenton Merricks, (...)
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  3.  74
    Freedom, Foreknowledge, and Dependence: A Dialectical Intervention.Taylor W. Cyr & Andrew Law - forthcoming - American Philosophical Quarterly.
    Recently, several authors have utilized the notion of dependence to respond to the traditional argument for the incompatibility of freedom and divine foreknowledge. However, proponents of this response have not always been so clear in specifying where the incompatibility argument goes wrong, which has led to some unfounded objections to the response. We remedy this dialectical confusion by clarifying both the dependence response itself and its interaction with the standard incompatibility argument. Once these clarifications are made, it becomes clear both (...)
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  4.  53
    Semicompatibilism and Moral Responsibility for Actions and Omissions: In Defense of Symmetrical Requirements.Taylor W. Cyr - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy:1-15.
    Although convinced by Frankfurt-style cases that moral responsibility does not require the ability to do otherwise, semicompatibilists have not wanted to accept a parallel claim about moral responsibility for omissions, and so they have accepted asymmetrical requirements on moral responsibility for actions and omissions. In previous work, I have presented a challenge to various attempts at defending this asymmetry. My view is that semicompatibilists should give up these defenses and instead adopt symmetrical requirements on moral responsibility for actions and omissions, (...)
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  5. How Does Death Harm the Deceased?Taylor W. Cyr - 2017 - In John K. Davis (ed.), Ethics at the End of Life: New Issues and Arguments. New York: Routledge. pp. 29-46.
    The most popular philosophical account of how death can harm (or be bad for) the deceased is the deprivation account, according to which death is bad insofar as it deprives the deceased of goods that would have been enjoyed by that person had the person not died. In this paper, the author surveys four main challenges to the deprivation account: the No-Harm-Done Argument, the No-Subject Argument, the Timing Argument, and the Symmetry Argument. These challenges are often raised by Epicureans, who (...)
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  6.  44
    Manipulated Agents: A Window to Moral Responsibility. [REVIEW]Taylor W. Cyr - 2020 - Philosophical Quarterly 70 (278):207-209.
    Manipulated Agents: A Window to Moral Responsibility. By Mele Alfred R..).
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  7. Moral Responsibility Without General Ability.Taylor W. Cyr & Philip Swenson - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (274):22-40.
    It is widely thought that, to be morally responsible for some action or omission, an agent must have had, at the very least, the general ability to do otherwise. As we argue, however, there are counterexamples to the claim that moral responsibility requires the general ability to do otherwise. We present several cases in which agents lack the general ability to do otherwise and yet are intuitively morally responsible for what they do, and we argue that such cases raise problems (...)
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  8.  30
    Manipulation and constitutive luck.Taylor W. Cyr - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (8):2381-2394.
    I argue that considerations pertaining to constitutive luck undermine historicism—the view that an agent’s history can determine whether or not she is morally responsible. The main way that historicists have motivated their view is by appealing to certain cases of manipulation. I argue, however, that since agents can be morally responsible for performing some actions from characters with respect to which they are entirely constitutively lucky, and since there is no relevant difference between these agents and agents who have been (...)
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  9.  54
    Moral Responsibility, Luck, and Compatibilism.Taylor Cyr - 2019 - Erkenntnis 84 (1):193-214.
    In this paper, I defend a version of compatibilism against luck-related objections. After introducing the types of luck that some take to be problematic for moral responsibility, I consider and respond to two recent attempts to show that compatibilism faces the same problem of luck that libertarianism faces—present luck. I then consider a different type of luck—constitutive luck—and provide a new solution to this problem. One upshot of the present discussion is a reason to prefer a history-sensitive compatibilist account over (...)
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  10.  41
    Rationally Not Caring About Torture: A Reply to Johansson.Taylor W. Cyr - 2014 - The Journal of Ethics 18 (4):331-339.
    Death can be bad for an individual who has died, according to the “deprivation approach,” by depriving that individual of goods. One worry for this account of death’s badness is the Lucretian symmetry argument: since we do not regret having been born later than we could have been born, and since posthumous nonexistence is the mirror image of prenatal nonexistence, we should not regret dying earlier than we could have died. Anthony Brueckner and John Martin Fischer have developed a response (...)
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  11.  61
    The Parallel Manipulation Argument.Taylor W. Cyr - 2016 - Ethics 126 (4):1075-1089.
    Matt King has recently argued that the manipulation argument against compatibilism does not succeed by employing a dilemma: either the argument infelicitously relies on incompatibilist sourcehood conditions, or the proponent of the argument leaves a premise of the argument undefended. This article develops a reply to King’s dilemma by showing that incompatibilists can accept its second horn. Key to King’s argument for the second horn’s being problematic is “the parallel manipulation argument.” I argue that King’s use of this argument is (...)
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  12.  29
    Why Compatibilists Must Be Internalists.Taylor Cyr - 2019 - Journal of Ethics 23 (4):473-484.
    Some compatibilists are internalists. On their view, whether an agent is morally responsible for an action depends only on her psychological structure at that time. Other compatibilists are externalists. On their view, an agent’s history can make a difference as to whether or not she is morally responsible. In response to worries about manipulation, some internalists have claimed that compatibilism requires internalism. Recently, Alfred Mele has argued that this internalist response is untenable. The aim of this paper is to vindicate (...)
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  13.  56
    Semicompatibilism: No Ability to Do Otherwise Required.Taylor W. Cyr - 2017 - Philosophical Explorations 20 (3):308-321.
    In this paper, I argue that it is open to semicompatibilists to maintain that no ability to do otherwise is required for moral responsibility. This is significant for two reasons. First, it undermines Christopher Evan Franklin’s recent claim that everyone thinks that an ability to do otherwise is necessary for free will and moral responsibility. Second, it reveals an important difference between John Martin Fischer’s semicompatibilism and Kadri Vihvelin’s version of classical compatibilism, which shows that the dispute between them is (...)
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  14.  30
    Timelessness and Freedom.Taylor W. Cyr - forthcoming - Synthese:1-15.
    One way that philosophers have attempted to defend free will against the threat of fatalism and against the threat from divine beliefs has been to endorse timelessness views. In this paper, I argue that, in order to respond to general worries about fatalism and divine beliefs, timelessness views must appeal to the notion of dependence. Once they do this, however, their distinctive position as timelessness views becomes otiose, for the appeal to dependence, if it helps at all, would itself be (...)
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  15.  54
    Free Will, Grace, and Anti-Pelagianism.Taylor W. Cyr & Matthew T. Flummer - 2018 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 83 (2):183-199.
    Critics of synergism often complain that the view entails Pelagianism, and so, critics think, monergism looks like the only live option. Critics of monergism often claim that the view entails that the blame for human sin ultimately traces to God. Recently, several philosophers have attempted to chart a middle path by offering soteriological accounts which are monergistic but maintain the resistibility of God’s grace. In this paper, we present a challenge to such accounts of the resistibility of grace, namely that (...)
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  16.  30
    Causation and Free Will, Written by Carolina Sartorio. [REVIEW]Taylor W. Cyr - 2018 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 15 (4):475-478.
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  17.  57
    A Puzzle About Death’s Badness: Can Death Be Bad for the Paradise-Bound?Taylor Cyr - 2016 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 80 (2):145-162.
    Since at least the time of Epicurus, philosophers have debated whether death could be bad for the one who has died, since death is a permanent experiential blank. But a different puzzle about death’s badness arises when we consider the death of a person who is paradise-bound. The first purpose of this paper is to develop this puzzle. The second purpose of this paper is to suggest and evaluate several potential attempts to solve the puzzle. After rejecting two seemingly attractive (...)
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  18.  51
    Moral Responsibility for Actions and Omissions: A New Challenge to the Asymmetry Thesis.Taylor Cyr - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (12):3153-3161.
    This paper presents a new challenge to the thesis that moral responsibility for an omission requires the ability to do the omitted action, whereas moral responsibility for an action does not require the ability to do otherwise than that action. Call this the asymmetry thesis. The challenge arises from the possibility of cases in which an omission is identical to an action. In certain of such cases, the asymmetry thesis leads to a contradiction. The challenge is then extended to recent (...)
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  19.  54
    Death’s Badness and Time-Relativity: A Reply to Purves.Taylor Cyr - 2016 - The Journal of Ethics 20 (4):435-444.
    According to John Martin Fischer and Anthony Brueckner’s unique version of the deprivation approach to accounting for death’s badness, it is rational for us to have asymmetric attitudes toward prenatal and posthumous nonexistence. In previous work, I have defended this approach against a criticism raised by Jens Johansson by attempting to show that Johansson’s criticism relies on an example that is incoherent. Recently, Duncan Purves has argued that my defense reveals an incoherence not only in Johansson’s example but also in (...)
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  20.  23
    Is Semicompatibilism Unstable?Taylor W. Cyr - 2017 - Disputatio 9 (45):245-264.
    Recently, John Maier has developed a unified account of various agentive modalities. According to him, however, adopting the account provides an alternative framework for thinking about free will and moral responsibility, one that reveals an unacceptable instability in semicompatibilism. In this paper, I argue that Maier is mistaken about the implications of his account and sketch a semicompatibilist proposal that can, without countenancing any instability, accept Maier’s unified account of the agentive modalities.
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