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The Dialectic Role of the Flickers of Freedom

Abstract

One well-known incompatibilist response to Frankfurt-style counterexamples is the ‘flicker-of-freedom strategy’. The flicker strategy claims that even in a Frankfurt-style counterexample, there are still morally relevant alternative possibilities. In the present paper, I differentiate between two distinct understandings of the flicker strategy, as the failure to differentiate these two versions has led some philosophers to argue at cross-purposes. I also explore the respective dialectic roles that the two versions of the flicker strategy play in the debate between compatibilists and incompatibilists. Building on this discussion, I then suggest a reason why the compatibilism/incompatibilism debate has reached a stalemate.

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Correspondence to Kevin Timpe.

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Timpe, K. The Dialectic Role of the Flickers of Freedom. Philos Stud 131, 337–368 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11098-004-7482-1

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Keywords

  • Moral Responsibility
  • Alternative Possibility
  • Alternate Sequence
  • Causal Determinism
  • Prior Sign