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Chapter 1

PHIL 201 Chapter 1: Philosophy notes march 17

Course Code
PHIL 201
C. Kenneth Waters

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Malika Qurishi
PHIL 201
March 17, 2019
Frankfurt, Harry G. (1971) Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person. Part B
Questions and Answers:
1. Frankfurt’s theory of the freedom of the will, what it is to have freedom?
- According to one familiar philosophical tradition, being free is
fundamentally a matter of doing what one wants to do.
- both the doing and the wanting, and the appropriate relation between
them as well, require clarification
- A person who is free to do what he wants to do may yet not be
in a position to have the will he wants. Suppose, however, that he
enjoys both freedom of action and freedom of the will. Then he
is not only free to do what he wants to do; he is also free to want
what he wants to want
- It seems to me that he has, in that case, all
the freedom it is possible to desire or to conceive
2. How his theory provides a basis for doubting that animals have free will?
- although we recognize that an animal may be free to run in what-
ever direction it wants. Thus, having the freedom to do what one
wants to do is not a sufficient condition of having a free will. It is
- not a necessary condition either. For to deprive someone of his
- freedom of action is not necessarily to undermine the freedom of
- his will. When an agent is aware that there are certain things he
- is not free to do, this doubtless affects his desires and limits the
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- range of choices he can make
3. How his theory provides an analysis of one of the necessary conditions of moral
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