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The Significance of Free Will$
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Robert Kane

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780195126563

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0195126564.001.0001

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Efforts, Purposes, and Practical Reason

Efforts, Purposes, and Practical Reason

(p.152) 9 Efforts, Purposes, and Practical Reason
The Significance of Free Will

Robert Kane (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The task of constructing an indeterminist account of free will without appeal to obscure or mysterious notions of agency or causation (begun in Ch. 8) is continued in this chapter. The theory is extended to additional topics beyond free choices in moral and prudential contexts, for example, to “efforts of will sustaining purposes” that may be involved in different human activities where resistance in the will must be overcome, to acts of attention, to self‐control and self‐modification, practical deliberation, creative problem solving and changes of intention in action. Along the way, a number of other topics are discussed: evolution and rationality, the role of chance in problem solving, self‐deception, the role of “effort” in Eastern philosophies, such as Taoism, and the relation of incommensurability of values to free will.

Keywords:   efforts of will, evolution, free will, incommensurability, practical deliberation, self‐control, self‐deception, self‐modification, Taoism

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