Acta Analytica

, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 16–28 | Cite as

Freedom and trying: Understanding agent-causal exertions

Moral Responsibility


In this paper, I argue that trying is the locus of freedom and moral responsibility. Thus, any plausible view of free and responsible action must accommodate and account for free tryings. I then consider a version of agent causation whereby the agent directly causes her tryings. On this view, the agent is afforded direct control over her efforts and there is no need to posit—as other agent-causal theorists do—an uncaused event. I discuss the potential advantages of this sort of view, and its challenges.


freedom trying exertion action agent causation 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyDavidson CollegeDavidsonUSA

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