The Mental Basis of Responsibility: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Mental Basis of Responsibility

1st Edition

By Walter Glannon


158 pages

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9781138739833
pub: 2019-12-20
Available for pre-order. Item will ship after 20th December 2019

FREE Standard Shipping!


This title was first published in 2002: This book is an analysis of the ways in which mental states ground attributions of responsibility to persons. Particular features of the book include: attention to the agent’s epistemic capacity for beliefs about the foreseeable consequences of actions and omissions; attention to the essential role of emotions in prudential and moral reasoning; a conception of personal identity that can justify holding persons responsible at later times for actions performed at earlier times; an emphasis on neurobiology as the science that should inform our thinking about free will and responsibility; and the melding of literature on free will and responsibility in contemporary analytic philosophy with legal cases, abnormal psychology, neurology and psychiatry, which offers a richer texture to the general debate on the relevant issues.


’Glannon's book is distinctive in that he brings together disparate literatures in an illuminating way. The scope of the book includes cutting edge debates about the metaphysics of free will and moral responsibility, but these are framed by the insights of psychological theory and the law. Glannon helpfully highlights the interdisciplinary nature of these problems in this fine book.’ John Martin Fischer, University of California, USA 'A strong appeal of Glannon's well-organized work is the way in which it brings together literature on free will and responsibility, legal cases, and abnormal psychology, neurology, and psychiatry. His rich and subtle discussion of the mental basis of responsibility merits careful scrutiny by anyone interested in moral responsibility or criminal liability.' The Journal of Value Inquiry

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; The concept of responsibility: Individual responsibility; Causal control; Multiple causes; Moral luck; Alternative accounts; Causal versus moral responsibility; Summary; Normative Competence: Outline of a theory of action; Cognition and emotion; Conditions of responsibility; Excuses; When the will is free; Psychopathy; Summary; Personhood, Personal Identity, and Responsibility: Persons, sources, and resources; Theories of personal identity; A pragmatic conception of personal identity; Psychological disconnectedness and discontinuity; Responsible behaviour; Character and action; Summary; Cognitive Control and Content: Types of control; Frankfurt and alternative possibilities; Reasons for revising PAP'; Responsibility for failures; Ability and time; Remote causal control; Responsibility for consequences; Summary; The freedom we need to be responsible: Arguments for incompatibilism; Two senses of 'choice'; Mind and brain; Two objections; Libertarianism and moral significance; Summary; Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.

About the Series

Routledge Revivals

Are there elusive titles that you need and have been trying to source for years but thought that you would never be able to find?

Well this may be the end of your quest – here is a fantastic opportunity for you to discover past brilliance and purchase previously out of print and unavailable titles by some of the world’s most eminent academic scholars.

Drawing from over 100 years of innovative, cutting-edge publishing, Routledge Revivals is an exciting programme whereby key titles from the distinguished and extensive backlist of the many acclaimed imprints associated with Routledge will be re-issued.

The programme draws upon the illustrious backlists of Kegan Paul, Trench & Trubner, Routledge & Kegan Paul, Methuen, Allen & Unwin and Routledge itself.

Routledge Revivals spans the whole of the Humanities and Social Sciences, and includes works by some of the world’s greatest thinkers including Emile Durkheim, Max Weber, Simone Weil, Martin Buber, Karl Jaspers and Max Beloff.

If you are interested in Revivals in the Behavioral Sciences, please visit

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: