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Augustine's Way into the Will – The Theological and Philosophical Significance of De libero arbitrio - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Augustine's Way into the Will: The Theological and Philosophical Significance of De libero arbitrio

Simon Harrison


Augustine is a pivotal figure in the history of the concept of will, but what is his ‘theory of will’? This book investigates Augustine’s use of ‘will’ in one particular context, his dialogue On Free Choice of the Will, taking seriously its historical and philosophical form. First, it finds that the dialogical nature of On Free Choice of the Will has been missed, as exemplified by the unhistorical and misleading modern attributions of names to the speakers. Secondly, the commonplace that Augustine changed his mind in the course of its composition is shown to be unfounded, and a case is made fo ... More

Keywords: Augustine, free will, On Free Choice of the Will, Confessions, City of God, On the Trinity, Descartes, cogito, first-person perspective

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2006 Print ISBN-13: 9780198269847
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2007 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198269847.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Simon Harrison, author
Former Research Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge, currently a junior doctor at the Bristol Royal Infirmary