Things I’m working on

“title redacted” (under review)

I argue for a novel Deep Self view of moral responsiblity on which an agent acts freely and is morally responsible for what she does (in the sense of rendering her blameworthy for her wrongdoing) only if she has a Deep Self for which she is responsible.

“title redacted” (under review)

I advance distinct sufficiency and necessity claims regarding what it is for one to be responsible for one’s Deep Self.

“title redacted” (under review)

I offer a hierarchical model of personal policy for the aspiration that I believe is crucial to responsibility, on which a personal policy is a higher order intention that governs one’s motivation, and helps fulfill one’s valuings.

“title redacted” (under review)

I argue for a special kind of valuing, which I call thick valuing, that constitutes and expresses what we are as practical agents, whether what is thickly valued is ice cream sandwiches, or the Free Software movement.

“Tony Soprano, Compartmentalized: An Achilles' Heel in the Deep Self View”

I address the problem of compartmentalization which arises in the deep self view of moral responsibility, drawing upon resources from discussions of the unity of virtue in virtue ethics.

“Embrace the Fictional Cinematic Narrator and It Embraces You Back: On the Ubiquity of Fictional Cinematic Narrators”

I offer a new argument for the claim that narration in fictional films entails the existence of fictional cinematic narrators that are neither the actual filmmakers, the implied filmmakers, nor narration itself.

“Saving the Hierarchical Model: Explaining the Case of the Unwilling Addict”

I argue that a hierarchical model of personal policy can help explain free actions and omissions in ways that provide them with rational justification.

“On the Initial Origin of Responsibility for the Deep Self”

I’m laying groundwork for a paper that directly addresses the problem with regress in relation to the paradox of self-creation.


Your Self is Deeper Than You Think: A Deep Self View of Moral Responsibility

I defend a novel deep self view of moral responsibility in which an agent’s deep self plays an essential role. I argue that an agent acts freely and is morally responsible for what she does in the accountability sense only if she has a deep self for which she is responsible. To be responsible for her deep self, she must have a history where she was afforded the unimpeded opportunity to develop and exercise the ability to perform what I call aspirational self-shaping. Standard deep self views in the literature say something much stronger. They contend that an agent acts freely and responsibly for what she does if and only if her actions or omissions issue from, and so express, her deep self. By offering a necessary condition for accountability drawing upon resources concerning responsibility for the deep self, my view escapes the counterexamples that familiar views face, while retaining the core of deep self views. Indeed, an agent may be blameworthy for her wrongdoing without it issuing from, and so expressing, her deep self. And yet, I argue that she must have a deep self for which she is responsible to be blameworthy for her wrongdoing. This is achieved by paying closer attention to the historical dimension of the deep self than have other deep self proponents.