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Free Will as an Open Scientific Problem$
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Mark Balaguer

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780262013543

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262013543.001.0001

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(p.1) 1 Introduction
Free Will as an Open Scientific Problem

Mark Balaguer

The MIT Press

This book proposes a novel view of free will and links the problem of free will and determinism to a straightforward (and wide-open) empirical question about the causal histories of certain neural events. In this chapter, the problem of free will is formulated and a few brief remarks about libertarianism are provided, along with a discussion of compatibilism. The chapter then provides an outline of the book, which explores why the compatibilism and conceptual-analysis issues are metaphysically irrelevant, why the libertarian question reduces to the issue of indeterminacy, and why there are no good arguments for or against determinism (or any other thesis that would support or reject libertarianism).

Keywords:   free will, determinism, neural events, libertarianism, compatibilism, indeterminacy

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