Bernard Berofsky

Bernard Berofsky (B. A. NYU, 1956, M.A., Columbia, 1959, Ph.D., Columbia, 1963) entered the study of philosophy in order to solve the free will problem and is dismayed that he is still working on it. He began his teaching career at Vassar College, and went on to the University of Michigan before returning to Columbia, where he taught for 37 years. He has also been a visiting Professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Berofsky performs as a stage magician under the name of Sebastian.

Areas of Specialization: 

Metaphysics, especially free will, moral responsibility, autonomy, determinism, and causality

Articles / Publications: 

Forthcoming: ’Doing What Comes Naturally: Autonomy as Liberation’. In Ben Colburn (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Autonomy. Routledge.

2019. ’The Luck Argument Against Libertarianism’. In Allan McKay and Michael Sevel (eds.), Free Will and the Law: New Perspectives, Oxon.

2017. ‘Classical Compatibilism’. In Kevin Timpe, Neil Levy and Megan Griffith (ads.), Routledge Companion to Free Will, Routledge.

2015. ‘Freedom as Creativity’. Journal of Philosophy 112: 373-95.

2014. ‘In Defense of Mill’s Theory of Free Will’. In A. Loizides (ed.), Mill’s Logic: Critical Appraisals, Routledge.

2014. ‘Free Will as Creativity’, the Baruch and Sarah Blum Lecture for 2014, Bar-Ilan University.

2012. Nature’s Challenge to Free Will. Oxford University Press.

2011. ‘Compatibilism Without Frankfurt: Dispositional Analyses of Free Will’. In Robert Kane (ed.), Handbook of Free Will, 2nd Ed. Oxford University Press.

2011. ‘Is Pathological Altruism Altruism?’ In Barbara Oakley, Ariel Knafo, Guruprasad Madhaven, David Sloan Wilson (eds.), Pathological Altruism, Oxford University Press.

2010. ‘Free Will and the Mind-Body Problem’. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (1):1 –19.

2006. ‘Global Control and Freedom’. Philosophical Studies 131 (2):419-445.

2006. ‘The Myth of Source’. Acta Analytica 21 (4): 3-18.

2004. ‘Autonomy and Free Will’. In J. S. Taylor (ed.), Personal Autonomy: New Essays on Personal Autonomy and its Role in Contemporary Philosophy. Cambridge University Press.

2003. Identification, the Self, and Autonomy. Social Philosophy and Policy 20 (2):199-220.

2003. ‘ Classical Compatibilism: Not Dead Yet’. In Michael McKenna and David Widerker (eds.), Moral Responsibility and Alternative Possibilities. Ashgate Press.

2002. ‘Ifs, Cans, and Free Will: The Issues’. In Robert Kane (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Free Will. Oxford University Press.

2000. ‘Ultimate Rsponsibility in a Deterministic World’. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 60 (1):135-40.

1998. Through Thick and Thin: Mele on Autonomy’Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 58 (3):689-697.

1995. Liberation From Self: A Theory of Personal Autonomy. Cambridge University Press.

1987. The Metaphysical Basis of Responsibility. Routledge.

Last updated April 22, 2021