Elbow Room: The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting (MIT Press) [Daniel C. Dennett] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. A landmark book . Dan Dennett’s Elbow Room is pretty good. It’s about free will, a perennial subject that’s intriguing for any person who’s ever stopped to wonder if the regularities. Daniel C. Dennett – – Philosophy 61 () Elbow Room: The DENNETT, DANIEL, C. Elbow Room: The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting.

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His universe is a mechanistic one, if not entirely deterministic in the classical sense. Oct 27, John Parks rated it really liked it.

Daniel C. Dennett, Elbow Room – PhilPapers

The second is a person who does, and understands the causal fabric of the universe, but still thinks there is room for free will.

As humans, we have the best chance to produce good behavior.

He start with an entire chapter on why we don’t want to think about free will. Jul 04, Joe Rowan rated it really liked it. Does the book really answer this question?

Daniel C. Dennett

For me elbw determinism, I think of this instant of my life on a straight line. It may, at first blush, seem like a fool’s errand to wonder about such things, or to even get into the mindset to see what the so-called problem is.

He uses very clear language to keep the book accessible even to people without backgrounds in philosophy, which is good. Mark Heller – – Philosophy in Review 6 1: The most important part of this discussion is really exposing the “libertarian free will” as unrealistic illusive fantasy. On one hand, we all feel like we have free will, a multitude of behavioral choices to select among. Given the chance to repeat some futile behavior endlessly, people can notice the futility of it, and by an act of free will do something else.


Most arguments are hidden within examples and metaphors or, as Dennett calls them, intuition pumps and many direct quotes by various other authors. May 17, Gendou rated it really liked it Shelves: He simply feels that the elaborateness of our decision making is something which we should call free will.

Which direction gravity works in is never up to me. Sanford – – Philosophy For an animal like a wasp, this process of repeating the same behavior can go on indefinitely, the wasp never seeming to notice what is going on. Dennett attempts to tackle these worries about whether or not we have free will little by little, looking at a particular fear, and then showing why we can dismiss it.

In discussing what people are and why free will matters to them, Dennett makes use of an evolutionary perspective. But the fact of the matter is that if our minds were in exactly the same state as that time, and we proceeded to act in the same way, it would be impossible, in the exact same situation to act differently dennegt we did.

Elbow Room: The Varieties of Free Will Worth Wanting

It reaches a conclusion that I am in total agreement with, and it does so without “cheating” by avoiding any of I take the debate about free will very seriously.

Consider your daily life: But unfortunately they are worth the trouble. Then we might very much want true responsibility, because we might very much want it to be true that other people really were the way we used deludedly to think they were: On this last point, I think he is just reluctant to commit, in light of quantum mechanics. Nov 10, Billie Pritchett rated it liked it Shelves: Dennett has slowly, through the course of the book, stripped the idea of behavioral choice from his idea of free will.


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Dennett – – Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 4: Eminently accessible to a person dennettt to commit, but, as all philosophical writing, commitment it requires. Request removal from index. Apr 12, Jimmy rated it really liked it Shelves: For anyone concerned with arguments over “free will” Elbow Room will be essential reading.

Interesting read, but difficult: But seriously, this was a very spirited defence of the possibility of free will. Apr 24, William rated it really liked it. Dennett argues that such efforts to salvage free will by finding a way out of the prison of determinism are wasted. Rroom 13, Adam rated it it was ok. There is really nothing more to it. So no harm, no foul. Dennett is at his strongest when deconstructing popular myths – even held by many of his professional colleagues today – and puts these into plain language even the dehnett philosopher.

We don’t have universe upon universes of neurons to compute how electrons in the nearest galaxy affects our decision whether to eat pizza today.