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Grünbaum, A. (1974). Free Will and Laws of Human Behavior. Psychoanal. Contemp. Sci., 3(1):3-39.

(1974). Psychoanalysis and Contemporary Science, 3(1):3-39

1 Philosophical Issues

Free Will and Laws of Human Behavior

Adolf Grünbaum, Ph.D.

1. Introduction

Is man's possession of free will compatible with causal and/or statistical laws of human behavior? This problem has been one of the perennial issues of modern philosophy. Its ramifications include the applicability of the scientific method to the study of our voluntary behavior, the logical consistency of advocating specific social changes while also predicting their occurrence, and the justice of making moral evaluations of human agents as a basis for meting out punishment or rewards to them.

The relevance of the compatibility of free will with laws of human behavior to psychoanalysis has been discussed by psychiatrists in the recent literature (see Waelder, 1963, and Sherwood, 1969, p. 158). Here I shall take that relevance for granted while addressing myself to major facets of the stated issue of compatibility.


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