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date: 06 July 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This article provides a reply to the Consequence Argument. It notes that the argument's soundness depends upon how one interprets modal notions such as power or ability (to bring something about) and avoidability (the power to do otherwise). It explores these “practical modalities,” and shows how different interpretations of them yield different versions of the Consequence Argument. It examines some familiar compatibilist responses to the argument, including those based on conditional analyses of the ability to do otherwise and the response of David Lewis. An adequate response, the article argues, must identify an ability to act that is adequate for moral responsibility, yet invalidates the Consequence Argument.

Keywords: practical modalities, Consequence Argument, David Lewis, moral responsibility

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