Putting the lie on the control condition for moral responsibility

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


In "Control, Responsibility, and Moral Assessment" Angela Smith defends her nonvoluntarist theory of moral responsibility against the charge that any such view is shallow because it cannot capture the depth of judgments of responsibility. Only voluntarist positions can do this since only voluntarist positions allow for control. I argue that Smith is able to deflect the voluntarists' criticism, but only with further resources. As a voluntarist, I also concede that Smith's thesis has force, and I close with a compromise position, one that allows for direct moral responsibility for the nonvoluntary, but also incorporates a reasonable control condition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-37
Number of pages9
JournalPhilosophical Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2008


  • Angela Smith
  • Control
  • Free will
  • Gary Watson
  • Moral responsibility
  • Nonvoluntarism
  • Real self views
  • Responsibility for character
  • Susan Wolf
  • Voluntarism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy


Dive into the research topics of 'Putting the lie on the control condition for moral responsibility'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this