Svantje Guinebert (Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin in Philosophy, University of Bremen)
Where Does the Buck Stop?
Abstract: What is wrong with absolute obedience? Imagine someone having done something horrific, which she claims to have been another person's decision, and not her own. We can only blame her if passing the buck in this way is wrong in some way or another. This talk will explore the possibility that she is making a *factual* mistake. Can we be mistaken as to whether we are autonomous? I will argue that ascribing final, buck-stopping authority to yourself is self-fulfilling, and that on this particular question we are each of us infallible. If I'm correct about this, the utility of other and weaker forms of self-fulfilling description requires this central form of self-ascription; Velleman's "epistemic freedom" is a noteworthy instance.