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Four Views on Free Will [Kindle Edition]

John Martin Fischer , Robert Kane , Derk Pereboom , Manuel Vargas
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Focusing on the concepts and interactions of free will, moral responsibility, and determinism, this text represents the most up-to-date account of the four major positions in the free will debate.

  • Four serious and well-known philosophers explore the opposing viewpoints of libertarianism, compatibilism, hard incompatibilism, and revisionism
  • The first half of the book contains each philosopher’s explanation of his particular view; the second half allows them to directly respond to each other’s arguments, in a lively and engaging conversation
  • Offers the reader a one of a kind, interactive discussion
  • Forms part of the acclaimed Great Debates in Philosophy series

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Editorial Reviews

Review

?This book presents four recent positions on free will in a clear and accessible way, along with their authors' responses to each other's position.? ( Metaphilosophy , January 2009)

"There is no better introduction to the debate available. This is a book that will be read with profit by anyone who opens it, specialist or newcomer." Neil Levy, Metapsychology Online Reviews

"Four Views on Free Will is an excellent introduction to the current debate regarding one of the most seductive of the perennial topics in philosophy. It is an especially welcome addition to Blackwell's "Great Debates in Philosophy" series. The goal is the presentation of a considerably more dialogical and engaging introduction to the main issues in an important domain of philosophical inquiry than can typically be achieved in a standard monograph. Four Views succeeds admirably in achieving this worthwhile goal." Daniel Speak, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews


"This gem of a book provides a wonderfully accessible introduction to the free will debate by leading proponents of four major views, as well as a front row seat to a dynamic, up-to-the minute philosophical conversation."
Dana Nelkin, University of California at San Diego

"This four-way debate is a fine addition to the Great Debates in Philosophy series. Four Views on Free Will is ideal for advanced undergraduate courses on free will."
Alfred R. Mele, Florida State University

?The four main essays are clearly written and argued, and the shorter articles are very useful as illustrations of how philosophers debate. Highly recommended.?
Choice Reviews

Review

"There is no better introduction to the debate available. This is a book that will be read with profit by anyone who opens it, specialist or newcomer."
Neil Levy, Metapsychology Online Reviews

"Four Views on Free Will is an excellent introduction to the current debate regarding one of the most seductive of the perennial topics in philosophy. It is an especially welcome addition to Blackwell's "Great Debates in Philosophy" series. The goal is the presentation of a considerably more dialogical and engaging introduction to the main issues in an important domain of philosophical inquiry than can typically be achieved in a standard monograph. Four Views succeeds admirably in achieving this worthwhile goal."
Daniel Speak, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

"This gem of a book provides a wonderfully accessible introduction to the free will debate by leading proponents of four major views, as well as a front row seat to a dynamic, up-to-the minute philosophical conversation."
–Dana Nelkin, University of California at San Diego

"This four-way debate is a fine addition to the Great Debates in Philosophy series. Four Views on Free Will is ideal for advanced undergraduate courses on free will."
–Alfred R. Mele, Florida State University


Product Details

  • File Size: 2153 KB
  • Print Length: 244 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 1 edition (June 1, 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002M3SV9K
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #388,468 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Short but sweet. October 23, 2010
By S
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This slim volume serves as a fantastic introduction to the problems in philosophy on the subject of free will. What is unique about this book is that it gives equal weight to four different theories: libertarianism, compatibilism, incompatibilism, and revisionism. These are hardly the only four theories out there, but they are definitely the most important and the most seriously considered options.

After the four theorists are done laying out their case for their preferred view, there are chapters where each philosopher responds to the claims the others have made. This structure is important because it enables the reader to understand why a philosopher might believe a certain view without the reader himself believing it. This knowledgeable stance is vital to communicating the problems of moral responsibility and free will in an academic setting.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Intro to these Four Views June 5, 2011
By jah
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Each of the four essays primary essays in this book provide very clear and concise introductions to their respective views of free will. The essays are written so as to be quite approachable to those who are not well-steeped in the contemporary free will debates; and it is also quite useful for those who do study free will, in that it provides a cursory overview of the key points of each view. This book would be perfect for an upper-division Metaphysics course, which covers free will and moral responsibility. Highly recommended.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Intro October 10, 2011
By Morgan
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book is a fabulous intro to the topic of free will. It shouldn't be too difficult a read for most and gives a great overview of the arguments for each position. Also, it introduces many of the same ideas that a basic intro book would, but in the context of argument, which can make it more interesting for those more well versed in philosophy.
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9 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great read for young people. June 17, 2010
By olenka
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
One of my favorite books.
It helped me to define my beliefs.
Additionally, it gave me argumentative strength in debates with my philosophy professor.
Particularly, the book was crucial in my defending an opposing view to that of my professor who tried to convince the whole class an entire semester that free will did not exist.
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4 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fifth View July 26, 2012
Format:Paperback
David Bohm in his "Causality and Chance in Modern Physics" indicated a fifth view of free will, and it is simply expressed:

The Laws of Physics, such as gravity or the Laws of Dynamics, provide physical perameters in which free will operates ACCORDING TO ITS OWN LAWS.

He gives this example:

"If we wish to fly, what we must do is to have a deeper and more accurate conception of the laws of Dynamics; and on the basis of this construct suitable devices such as aeroplanes, dirigibles, rockets, etc.

"Thus, in the last analysis, the laws of nature do not depend on how we think about,or on WHAT WE CHOOSE TO DO, but our actions must be guided by correct conceptions of these laws if they are to lead to the resulys that we aim for."

The other four views seem to be without demonstrations ad experimentum, and appear to be the mere juggling of concepts without any experimental foundation, and are not science but philosophical theory.

Father Clifford Stevens
Boys Town, Nebraska
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