Chapter

Will and Free Will in Antiquity

Jaap Mansfeld

in Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199644384
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191743344 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199644384.003.0009

Series: Oxford Studies in Ancient Philosophy

Will and Free Will in Antiquity

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Michael Frede's posthumously published Sather Lectures discuss the origin and scope of the concept of a free will in antiquity, from the Stoics to Augustine via, among others, Alexander of Aphrodisias and Plotinus. Here Frede disagrees that a notion of the will as a factor or distinct event in the mind appears only with Augustine. This chapter analyses the Sather Lectures chapter by chapter. The theme of free will is tricky because the concept has become problematic in contemporary philosophy, and so may well have outlived its usefulness, this chapter states. Frede's aim, however, is not philosophical but historical.

Keywords: Michael Frede; Sather Lectures; Stoics; Augustine; free will

Chapter.  7844 words. 

Subjects: Ancient Philosophy

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