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Who Knew?Responsibility Without Awareness$
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George Sher

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195389197

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195389197.001.0001

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The Searchlight View

The Searchlight View

Chapter:
(p.3) One The Searchlight View
Source:
Who Knew?
Author(s):

George Sher (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195389197.003.0001

This chapter raises the question of how we are to understand the epistemic condition for responsibility. It introduces the searchlight view, which asserts that agents are responsible only for those features and results of their acts of which they are aware when they perform the acts, and it documents that view's prominence. It then suggests that the searchlight view is problematic because it draws on a conception of the responsible agent that is closely linked to the first-personal perspective while purporting to specify a necessary condition for the applicability of a concept—responsibility—whose natural context is third-personal. The chapter ends with an outline of the book's main arguments.

Keywords:   responsibility, epistemic condition, first-person, third-person, deliberation, consciousness, searchlight view, Thomas Scanlon

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