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A Contemporary Introduction to Free Will (Fundamentals of Philosophy Series) Paperback – 26 May 2005


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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: OUP USA (26 May 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 019514970X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195149708
  • Product Dimensions: 20.8 x 1.8 x 13.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 347,392 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

engagingly written...a gripping and an absolutely pivotal period of operatic history, (Daniel Snowman, Opera Now)

A Contemporary Introduction to Free Will will replace all other introductions to the subject. (Saul Smilansky. Times Literary Supplement)

...an excellent survey of the contemporary free-will debate...Kane...does such a good job that A Contemporary Introduction to Free Will will replace all other introductions to the subject. While the book is accessible to the lay reader, students of this problem will also read it with benefit. (Saul Smilanksy, Times Literary Supplement)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Peter Clarke on 7 April 2010
Format: Paperback
As a neurobiologist interested in the philosophy of free will I found this tremendously helpful. Kane is perhaps the world's leading exponent of libertarianism, but this book is not at all biased towards his own position. He gives an even-handed account of all the major positions with great clarity. He somehow manages to combine the precision of the analytical philosopher with the comprehensibility of the teacher.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a very well written book which addresses the issues with great clarity. Robert Kane carefully set up questions in the reader's mind and then provides possible answers. Superb.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Z. Pär-ola on 26 July 2010
Format: Paperback
This is a really good book in that it introduces a number of important positions, reviews them, and provide some suggested readings in the end of the chapter. It strikes me as exceptionally clear and well written.

Potential readers may be interested in that Kane himself is a (free will) libertarian. His program is to reconcile the libertarian view of free will with "what we know in modern science" (see chapter "free wil and modern science"). He has written extensively on free will and is an authority on the subject.

I am not a professional philosopher, so it is hard for me to put it into relation with the rest of the contemporary debate around free will. However, it strikes me that even for an analytic philosopher, there are very few references to continental philosophers (Sartre and Engels and their contemporary heirs have interesting things to say about free will, for instance). The exception is a short discussion about Nietzsche (only because another philosopher that Kane is discussing has quoted him). There are some links to Kant too, but where are the more contemporary continental philosophers? This is my only reason for not giving it 5 stars.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful By G. Kochanski on 8 Sept. 2010
Format: Paperback
It's a book on a difficult subject. It's a good book that tries to tackle and explain some difficult ideas. It succeeds to a degree.

The book is written to let you see everyone's arguments, rather than pushing for one point of view. And, it does that pretty well, showing the limits of the arguments and where they apply. It's not a highly technical book, but not a page-turner.
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0 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Michael Waghorne on 5 April 2009
Format: Paperback
I really read this to reinforce my own prejudices. A bit loose in the writing but useful.
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