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Kristin M. Mickelson [13]Kristin Mickelson [6]
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Kristin M. Mickelson
University of Colorado, Boulder (PhD)
Kristin Mickelson
University of Gothenburg
  1. Free Will, Self‐Creation, and the Paradox of Moral Luck.Kristin M. Mickelson - 2019 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 43 (1):224-256.
    How is the problem of free will related to the problem of moral luck? In this essay, I answer that question and outline a new solution to the paradox of moral luck, the source-paradox solution. This solution both explains why the paradox arises and why moral luck does not exist. To make my case, I highlight a few key connections between the paradox of moral luck and two related problems, namely the problem of free will and determinism and the paradox (...)
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  2. The Zygote Argument is Invalid: Now What?Kristin Mickelson - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (11):2911-2929.
    Alfred Mele’s original Zygote Argument is invalid. At most, its premises entail the negative thesis that free action is incompossible with deterministic laws, but its conclusion asserts the positive thesis that deterministic laws preclude free action. The original, explanatory conclusion of the Zygote Argument can be defended only by supplementing the Zygote Argument with a best-explanation argument that identifies deterministic laws as menacing. Arguably, though, the best explanation for the manipulation victim’s lack of freedom and responsibility is his constitutive luck, (...)
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  3. The Problem of Free Will and Determinism: An Abductive Approach.Kristin M. Mickelson - 2019 - Social Philosophy and Policy 36 (1):154-172.
    This essay begins by dividing the traditional problem of free will and determinism into a “correlation” problem and an “explanation” problem. I then focus on the explanation problem, and argue that a standard form of abductive (i.e. inference to the best-explanation) reasoning may be useful in solving it. To demonstrate the fruitfulness of the abductive approach, I apply it to three standard accounts of free will. While each account implies the same solution to the correlation problem, each implies a unique (...)
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  4. The Soft-Line Solution to Pereboom's Four-Case Argument.Kristin Mickelson - 2010 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (4):595-617.
    Derk Pereboom's Four-Case Argument is among the most famous and resilient manipulation arguments against compatibilism. I contend that its resilience is not a function of the argument's soundness but, rather, the ill-gotten gain from an ambiguity in the description of the causal relations found in the argument's foundational case. I expose this crucial ambiguity and suggest that a dilemma faces anyone hoping to resolve it. After a thorough search for an interpretation which avoids both horns of this dilemma, I conclude (...)
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  5.  34
    (In)Compatibilism.Kristin M. Mickelson - forthcoming - In Joseph Campbell (ed.), Companion to Free Will. New York: Wiley-Blackwell.
    The terms ‘compatibilism’ and ‘incompatibilism’ were introduced in the mid-20th century to name conflicting views about the in-principle relationship between the thesis of determinism and the thesis that someone has free will. These technical terms were originally introduced within a specific research paradigm, the classical analytic paradigm, but few free-will theorists still work within that paradigm (i.e. using its methods, granting its substantive background assumptions, etc.). This chapter discusses how the ambiguity of the terms ‘incompatibilism’ and ‘compatibilism’ took root. I (...)
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  6. A Critique of Vihvelin’s Three-Fold Classification.Kristin Mickelson - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (1):85-99.
    In this essay, I argue for the rejection of Vihvelin's ‘Three-fold Classification’ , a nonstandard taxonomy of free-will compatibilism, incompatibilism, and impossibilism. Vihvelin is right that the standard taxonomy of these views is inadequate, and that a new taxonomy is needed to clarify the free-will debate. Significantly, Vihvelin notes that the standard formal definition of ‘incompatibilism’ does not capture the historically popular view that deterministic laws pose a threat to free will. Vihvelin's proposed solution is to redefine ‘incompatibilism.’ However, Vihvelin's (...)
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  7. The Manipulation Argument.Kristin Mickelson - 2016 - In Chapter 14, the Routledge Companion to Free Will (editors: Meghan Griffith , Kevin Timpe & Neil Levy). New York: Routledge.
    "The Manipulation Argument has recently taken center stage in the free-will debate, yet little else can be said of this newcomer that is uncontroversial. At present, even the most fundamental elements of the Manipulation Argument--its structure, conclusion, and target audience--are a matter of dispute. As such, we cannot begin, as we ideally would, with a simple and relatively uncontroversial overview of the argument. Instead, clarifying the debate over the basic structure and general conclusion of the Manipulation Argument will be our (...)
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  8. Hard Times for Hard Incompatibilism.Kristin M. Mickelson - forthcoming - Acta Analytica.
    Constructive incompatibilism is the conjunction of two views about the free will of normal human beings. Roughly, the first view says that human freedom is incompatible with determinism, and the second says that human freedom is incompatible with indeterminism. Since either determinism or indeterminism is true, constructive incompatibilism entails that it is metaphysically impossible for a human to perform a free action—and, a fortiori, that we do not have free will. In this essay, I argue that Pereboom’s case for hard (...)
     
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  9. The Zygote Argument Is Still Invalid: So What?Kristin M. Mickelson - 2021 - Philosophia 49 (2):705-722.
    In “The Zygote Argument is Invalid: Now What?” (2015), Kristin Mickelson argues that Alfred Mele’s original Zygote Argument is invalid: its two premises tell us merely that the truth of determinism is correlated with the absence of free human agents, but the argument nonetheless concludes with a specific explanation for that correlation, namely that deterministic laws preclude—rule out, destroy, undermine, make impossible, rob us of—free will. In a recent essay, Gabriel De Marco (2016) grants that the original Zygote Argument is (...)
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  10.  56
    Just Deserts: Debating Free Will (Review; Invited). [REVIEW]Kristin M. Mickelson - 2021 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 29 (3):408-412.
    Plug ‘free will’ into YouTube’s search function and you will find a shocking range of people confidently sharing their untutored opinions on the topic – from recognizable physicists (Neil de Grasse...
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  11. Motte-and-Bailey Incompatibilism.Kristin M. Mickelson - manuscript
    Free-will incompatibilism has become a motte-and-bailey doctrine (Shackel 2014), and is currently being maintained by standard motte-and-bailey strategies. In this paper, I explain why incompatibilism has a motte-and-bailey structure and why philosophers who do not aim to dismantle it are complicit in both the maintenance of this problematic doctrine and the normalization of a host of bad practices engaged in by those who actively exploit it. To solidify the diagnosis, I demonstrate that there is at least one case of paradigmatic (...)
     
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  12. A Companion to Free Will.Joseph Campbell, Kristin M. Mickelson & V. Alan White (eds.) - forthcoming
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  13. Blackwell Companion to Free Will.Joe Campbell, Kristin Mickelson & V. Alan White (eds.) - forthcoming - Blackwell.
  14. Wiley Companion to Free Will.Joe Campbell, Kristin M. Mickelson & V. Alan White (eds.) - forthcoming - Wiley.
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  15. Constructive Dilemma Arguments for the Impossibility of Free Will.Kristin M. Mickelson - manuscript
    The traditional problem of free will and determinism is ostensibly about settling the relationship between free will and determinism. According to the standard narrative, this problem boils down to settling whether free will stands in a compatibility or incompatibility relation with determinism. Similarly, there is traditional debate over whether a compatibility or an incompatibility relationship holds between free will and indeterminism. Since indeterminism is simply the negation of determinism, anyone who holds that human free will is incompatible with both determinism (...)
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  16. On the Relations and Relata of (In)Compatibilism: A Technical Review.Kristin M. Mickelson - manuscript
    The chapter begins with a discussion of the determinism relatum (§2) and the free-will relatum (§3). The next section (§4) identifies four relations which are commonly used to characterize (in)compatibilism: metaphysical incompossibility, logical inconsistency, metaphysical incompatibility, and logical incompatibility. In closing (§5), I suggest a way to disambiguate the terms “compatibilism” and “incompatibilism”. -/- For the most recent draft, please gmail me: kristin.mickelson.42.
     
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  17.  34
    Free Will Fundamentals: Agency, Determinism, and (In)Compatibility.Kristin Mickelson - 2012 - Dissertation, University of Colorado, Boulder
    NOTE TO READERS: My current research program is firmly grounded in the technical aspects of this dissertation. That said, my views have evolved significantly since writing this dissertation, e.g. I've flipped my views on the best working definition of 'determinism', and I no longer defend the viability of incompatibilist-impossibilism (I still grant the superficial logical consistency of the two views, but now contend that there is no way to defend one without rejecting the other). I have also given up on (...)
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  18. Humean Laws, Humean-Law Compatibilism, and the Consequence Argument.Kristin M. Mickelson - manuscript
    Traditional compatibilism is the view that free will is compatible with determinism. Humean-law compatibilism (a.k.a. weak-law compatibilism), is the view that free will is compatible with determinism, where determinism is defined in terms of a broadly Humean view of the laws of nature. A growing number of philosophers hold that Humean-law compatibilists are targeted by and have special resources to resist arguments for traditional incompatibilism, including the Consequence Argument (cf. Beebee and Mele 2002, Perry 2004, Hetherington 2006, Berofsky 2012, Mele (...)
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  19. The Consequence Argument: An Argument For Incompatibilism?Kristin M. Mickelson - manuscript
    According to Joseph Campbell's "No Past Objection" (NPO), popular formal statements of the Consequence Argument are oddly silent about the freedom status of actors who lack a “remote past,” a time prior to their birth at which their universe existed but they did not. As such, NPO problematizes the common view that the Consequence Argument concludes that determinism (perhaps in combination with other things) conflicts with or poses some kind of threat to free will. In this essay, I present a (...)
     
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