Responsibility, Moral and Otherwise

Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (2):127-142 (2015)
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Abstract

Philosophers frequently distinguish between causal responsibility and moral responsibility, but that distinction is either ambiguous or confused. We can distinguish between causal responsibility and a deeper kind of responsibility, that licenses reactive attitudes and judgments that a merely causal connection would not, and we can distinguish between holding people accountable for their moral qualities and holding people accountable for their nonmoral qualities. But, because we sometimes hold people deeply responsible for nonmoral qualities of behavior and character, these distinctions are not the same. A number of recent accounts of responsibility identify deep responsibility with moral responsibility and in consequence miss some key features of the concept of which they are trying to give an account. A view that distinguishes two levels of responsibility, according to which the conditions of attributability are weaker than the conditions of accountability, might seem to account for a kind of non..

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Susan Wolf
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Citations of this work

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References found in this work

Freedom and Resentment.Peter Strawson - 1962 - Proceedings of the British Academy 48:187-211.
Responsibility and the Moral Sentiments.R. Jay Wallace - 1994 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
Freedom and Resentment.Peter Strawson - 2003 - In Gary Watson (ed.), Free Will. Oxford University Press.
Two Faces of Responsibility.Gary Watson - 1996 - Philosophical Topics 24 (2):227-248.

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