Free Will as Advanced Action Control for Human Social Life and Culture
Roy F Baumeister, A William Crescioni, Jessica L Alquist
NEUROETHICS | SPRINGER | Published : 2011
Free will can be understood as a novel form of action control that evolved to meet the escalating demands of human social life, including moral action and pursuit of enlightened self-interest in a cultural context. That understanding is conducive to scientific research, which is reviewed here in support of four hypotheses. First, laypersons tend to believe in free will. Second, that belief has behavioral consequences, including increases in socially and culturally desirable acts. Third, laypersons can reliably distinguish free actions from less free ones. Fourth, actions judged as free emerge from a distinctive set of inner processes, all of which share a common psychological and physiologic..View full abstract
We gratefully acknowledge grant support by the Templeton Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.