Freedom of the will and the concept of a person

Journal of Philosophy 68 (1):5-20 (1971)
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Abstract

It is my view that one essential difference between persons and other creatures is to be found in the structure of a person's will. Besides wanting and choosing and being moved to do this or that, men may also want to have certain desires and motives. They are capable of wanting to be different, in their preferences and purposes, from what they are. Many animals appear to have the capacity for what I shall call "first-order desires" or "desires of the first order," which are simply desires to do or not to do one thing or another. No animal other than man, however, appears to have the capacity for reflective self-evaluation that is manifested in the formation of second-order desires.

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Harry G. Frankfurt
Princeton University

Citations of this work

How the Body Shapes the Mind.Shaun Gallagher - 2005 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK.
Conditions of personhood.Daniel C. Dennett - 1976 - In Amélie Rorty (ed.), The Identities of Persons. University of California Press.
Metaphysical Rationalism.Shamik Dasgupta - 2016 - Noûs 50 (2):379-418.
Structures of agency: essays.Michael Bratman - 2007 - New York: Oxford University Press.

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