A Philosophical Foray

  • Malcolm R. Westcott


In this chapter I will attempt to sample coherently from the nearly endless philosophical literature on freedom. I will make reference to schemes proposed by Cranston (1967), and by Gibbs (1976), to a broad integrative abstraction proposed by Adler (1973), and to some other analytical schemes which I have extracted from various authors and have found useful. I will lead a side trip into the issue of free will, because it is fundamental to notions of human freedom, but I make no pretense to resolving this issue. Finally a glance at the sweeping ubiquity of human freedom proposed by the existentialists will give an additional dimension to the conceptual labyrinth of this diversified topic. The focus will be on a conceptual analysis of freedom, dealt with at varying levels of abstraction, and we will see that capacity and non-interference are fundamental in such an analysis, with some attention paid to discipline as a necessary feature.


Human Behaviour Philosophical Literature Human Freedom Moral Choice Marginal Interest 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Malcolm R. Westcott
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyYork UniversityNorth YorkCanada

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