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Instructors: Markus Kohl and Ram Neta. This course meets T 1:00 – 3:30 p.m. in CW 213.

Agents are (so we commonly suppose) responsible for accepting certain beliefs about the world, and their acceptance of these beliefs can be more or less rational, or justified. Is this because adopting beliefs about the world is a voluntary action?  Or can responsibility and rationality extend beyond the voluntary? Does acting for reasons require the exercise of the will, or can we make room for a distinctively epistemic type of rational, norm-governed agency? This course will explore these and related questions, with special attention to Kant’s treatment of these issues, as well as the treatment to be found in contemporary philosophers influenced by Kant (including Pamela Hieronymi, Berislav Marusic, Miriam McCormick, and Matthew Boyle).

Graduate students in Philosophy can use this course to satisfy either the Modern History or the Epistemology requirement. Depending on their choice, their final term paper will either be concerned primarily with Kant’s view or focus primarily on the contemporary discussion.


PHIL graduate students: Please refer to our Handbook (page 6, #9) for further information regarding distribution requirements.

Permission of the instructors is required to enroll in this course. PHIL grad students are exempt from this enrollment requirement.