The Journal of Ethics

, Volume 23, Issue 3, pp 277–290 | Cite as

Further Reflections on The Free Will Debate and Basic Desert: A Reply to Nelkin and Pereboom

  • Michael McKennaEmail author


In my “The Free Will Debate and Basic Desert,” I argued that against a familiar claim in the free will debate: that the freedom in dispute between compatibilists and incompatibilists is limited to the type required for an agent to deserve blame for moral wrongdoing, and to deserve it in a sense that is basic. In that earlier paper, I sought a rationale for this claim, offered an explanation of basic desert, and then argued that the free will debate can persist even when divorced from basic desert. Dana Nelkin and Derk Pereboom then argued against my thesis. In this paper, I reply to their thoughtful criticisms.


Free will Moral responsibility Blame Desert Dana Nelkin Derk Pereboom 



For helpful comments, I would like to thank Dana Nelkin, Derk Pereboom, Carolina Sartorio, and Manuel Vargas.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of ArizonaTucsonUSA

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