Free Will is not a Mystery

Laura Waddell Ekstrom

in The Oxford Handbook of Free Will

Second edition

Published in print July 2011 | ISBN: 9780195399691
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Free Will is not a Mystery

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This article defends an event-causal libertarian view. To introduce the view, the first half of the article deals with another notion that has been entwined with contemporary debates about free will and has also generated a large recent literature, the notion of autonomy or self-determination. The coherence account of autonomy can be interpreted in compatibilist terms. But the article notes that free agency also requires alternative possibilities and these require indeterminism. It argues that indeterminism can be introduced into the picture of autonomous action by supposing that free actions result by “normal causal processes” from preferences that were “noncoercively formed” and were caused but not determined by the agent's considerations.

Keywords: free will; self-determination; free agency; indeterminism; autonomous action

Article.  7661 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Metaphysics

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