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An Essay on Free Will

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  65 ratings  ·  4 reviews
In this stimulating and thought-provoking book, the author defends the thesis that free will is incompatible with determinism. He disputes the view that determinism is necessary for moral responsbility. Finding no good reason for accepting determinism, but believing moral responsibility to be indubitable, he concludes that determinism should be rejected.
Paperback, 272 pages
Published February 20th 1986 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published August 25th 1983)
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Sep 13, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Free willers
Shelves: adulttitles
The Consequence Argument. Enough said.
Xavier Alexandre
Aug 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: philosophy
An excellent overview of the problem of free will, reviewed by a philosopher who spent most of his life thinking about it. The book is actually a collection of papers written by Peter van Inwagen at various time of his career.

Peter van Inwagen spends a lot of time defining precisely what is free will. The clearest definition borrows from the style Turing used to define Turing machines : describing a situation where free will must exist for that situation to happen. This is most often a situation
Oct 12, 2020 added it
Peter van Inwagen (PVI) is a very precise and careful thinker. He argues that determinism and free will are incompatible and then he argues for why free will exists. Therefore, there are some indeterminate factors in the world, by this argument.
Jan 20, 2009 rated it really liked it
A clear defense of incompatibilism from a leading metaphysician.
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Peter van Inwagen is an American analytic philosopher and the John Cardinal O'Hara Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. earned his PhD from the University of Rochester under the direction of Richard Taylor and Keith Lehrer.

Today, Van Inwagen is one of the leading figures in contemporary metaphysics, philosophy of religion, and philosophy of action. He has taught previously at S

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