In Peter A. French & Howard K. Wettstein (eds.), Philosophy and the Empirical. Blackwell. pp. 202–213 (2007)

Thomas Nadelhoffer
College of Charleston
During the past two decades, an interest among philosophers in fictitious and illusory beliefs has sprung up in fields ranging anywhere from mathematics and modality to morality.1 In this paper, we focus primarily on the view that Saul Smilansky has dubbed “free will illusionism”—i.e., the purportedly descriptive claim that most people have illusory beliefs concerning the existence of libertarian free will, coupled with the normative claim that because dispelling these illusory beliefs would produce negative personal and societal consequences, those of us who happen to know the dangerous and gloomy truth about the non-existence of libertarian free will should simply keep quiet in the name of the common good.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Buy the book Find it on
DOI 10.1111/j.1475-4975.2007.00156.x
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 71,512
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Varieties of Reference.Gareth Evans - 1982 - Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Science Without Numbers: A Defence of Nominalism.Hartry H. Field - 1980 - Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press.
Living Without Free Will.Derk Pereboom - 2001 - Cambridge University Press.
Realism, Mathematics, and Modality.Hartry Field - 1988 - Philosophical Topics 16 (1):57-107.

View all 50 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

An Error Theory for Compatibilist Intuitions.Adam Feltz & Melissa Millan - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (4):529-555.
Experimental Philosophy and Free Will.Tamler Sommers - 2010 - Philosophy Compass 5 (2):199-212.

View all 8 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Free Will and the Mystery of Modesty.Saul Smilansky - 2003 - American Philosophical Quarterly 40 (2):105-118.
Free Will and Illusion.Saul Smilansky - 2000 - Oxford University Press.
Free Will: From Nature to Illusion.Saul Smilansky - 2001 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 101 (1):71-95.
Is Libertarian Free Will Worth Wanting?Saul Smilansky - 1990 - Philosophical Investigations 13 (3):273-76.
Does the Free Will Debate Rest on a Mistake?Saul Smilansky - 1993 - Philosophical Papers 22 (3):173-88.
Discussion: Is Libertarian Free Will Worth Wanting?Saul Smilansky - 1990 - Philosophical Investigations 13 (3):273-276.
Free Will.Saul Smilansky - 1999 - The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 1999:143-152.


Added to PP index

Total views
119 ( #99,780 of 2,520,893 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #205,180 of 2,520,893 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes