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The Southern Journal of Philosophy

Volume 47, Issue 3, Fall 2009

Christopher Woodard
Pages 301-319

Pedro’s Significance

Williams’s famous story of Jim exemplifies a general class of dilemmas caused by recalcitrant agents. Like Williams himself, most commentators have focused on Jim and the idea that he has special responsibility for his actions. This paper shifts attention to Pedro, exploring his significance in the story and arguing that Jim has a reason not to shoot that depends on Pedro’s best possible response. In so doing, it sketches a new approach to the general class of dilemmas posed by recalcitrant agents, drawing attention to the advantages of this approach and to the difficulties it faces and comparing it to rival views associated with Ross and Kamm.

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