Free Will

Free Will

by Mark Balaguer
3.8 14

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Free Will by Mark Balaguer

In our daily life, it really seems as though we have free will, that what we do from moment to moment is determined by conscious decisions that we freely make. You get up from the couch, you go for a walk, you eat chocolate ice cream. It seems that we're in control of actions like these; if we are, then we have free will. But in recent years, some have argued that free will is an illusion. The neuroscientist (and best-selling author) Sam Harris and the late Harvard psychologist Daniel Wegner, for example, claim that certain scientific findings disprove free will. In this engaging and accessible volume in the Essential Knowledge series, the philosopher Mark Balaguer examines the various arguments and experiments that have been cited to support the claim that human beings don't have free will. He finds them to be overstated and misguided.Balaguer discusses determinism, the view that every physical event is predetermined, or completely caused by prior events. He describes several philosophical and scientific arguments against free will, including one based on Benjamin Libet's famous neuroscientific experiments, which allegedly show that our conscious decisions are caused by neural events that occur before we choose. He considers various religious and philosophical views, including the philosophical pro-free-will view known as compatibilism. Balaguer concludes that the anti-free-will arguments put forward by philosophers, psychologists, and neuroscientists simply don't work. They don't provide any good reason to doubt the existence of free will. But, he cautions, this doesn't necessarily mean that we have free will. The question of whether we have free will remains an open one; we simply don't know enough about the brain to answer it definitively.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780262321464
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 02/14/2014
Series: MIT Press Essential Knowledge Series
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 152
File size: 131 KB

About the Author

Mark Balaguer is Professor in the Department of Philosophy at California State University, Los Angeles. He is the author of Platonism and Anti-Platonism in Mathematics and Free Will as an Open Scientific Question (MIT Press).

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Free Will 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Shud I read it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We have moved to "Harpela" res one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Im here ocasionally to see if anyone posted.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A shadow climbs a tree
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
((Okie!)) He freaked again. "Eh!? No! I'm gonna go hide now." He ran inside the nearest building.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Where's Jordan?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An explosion is heard nearby. A hole in the side of a building releases 100 more. The trample over each other quickly
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Grunts before setting down her bow.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really? xD
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
-He motioned Zach back to the Subways.-
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Make a run for the base
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
No one's killin' anyone in my base!