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Social Theory and Practice

Volume 42, Issue 4, October 2016

Sofia Jeppsson
Pages 681-705
DOI: 10.5840/soctheorpract201642423

Accountability, Answerability, and Freedom

It has been argued that we cannot be morally responsible in the sense required to deserve blame or punishment if the world is deterministic, but still morally responsible in the sense of being apt targets for moral criticism. Desert-entailing moral responsibility is supposed to be more freedom-demanding than other kinds of responsibility, since it justifies subjecting people to blame and punishments, is nonconsequentialist, and has been shown by thought experiments to be incompatible with determinism. In this paper, I will show that all these arguments can be resisted.

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