The Journal of Ethics

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 73–84 | Cite as

Manipulation and the Zygote Argument: Another Reply



Alfred Mele’s zygote argument is widely considered to be the strongest version of the manipulation argument against compatibilism (about free will and determinism). Opponents have focused largely on the first of its two premises and on the overall dialectic. My focus here will be on the underlying thought experiment—the Diana scenario—and on the second premise of the argument. I will argue that reflection on the Diana scenario shows that the second premise does not hold, and we will see that my objection to the second premise helps to defend the claim that manipulation arguments face, in general, a dilemma.


Compatibilism Free will Manipulation arguments Moral responsibility Zygote argument 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Philosophy, Newman BuildingUniversity College DublinDublin 4Ireland

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