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Scholars Day: April 7, 2010

Nietzsche’s Free Will Subjectivism

In contemporary debates concerning the issue of free will, one prominent historical figure who is rarely discussed is Friedrich Nietzsche. This is understandable, since, on a casual reading, Nietzsche’s views on freedom of the will seem at best obscure and at worst incoherent. However, if one is willing to probe a little deeper, the presenter believes that Nietzsche has some original ideas which do, in fact, make a significant contribution to the free will debate. It is the presenters contention that Nietzsche does not hold either an incompatibilist view or a compatibilist view of free will; rather, what Nietzsche does bring to the table in the free will debate is a subjectivist theory of free will which licenses praising or blaming others in light of how their actions affect us and each other.

Presenter: William Liktor (Undergraduate Student)
Topic: Philosophy
Location: 27 Hartwell
Time: 1:15 pm (Session III)