Free Will vs Determinism Essay

1394 words 6 pages
PHIL 110 Essay #2
February 15, 2010
GTF: Emma Jones
Free Will vs. Determinism The argument of whether we humans are pre determined to turn out how we are and act the way we do or if we are our own decision makers and have the freedom to choose our paths in life is a long-standing controversy. The ideas of Sartre, Freud, and Darwin are each strong in their own manner, yet Sartre presents the best and most realistic argument as to how we choose our path; we are in control of the things we do and responsible for the decisions we make. Not only this, but also, our decisions have an effect on our peer’s choices, just as theirs affect ours. In this paper, I will argue that Jean-Paul Sartre makes the best argument of the three philosophers
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In reading part three of George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, I had a difficult time finding where in there free will could be seen. After reading thorough it again, it began to show up that the citizens really didn’t have total freedom. Their decisions were being controlled by the individuals in the government, therefore, preventing them from having true free will. Although in today’s society we are still be controlled by the government just as Winston is in the story, Sartre’s argument of free will still exists. We can still make our own choices to do what we want, but as he said we are also still responsible for our actions, whichever they may be.
Sigmund Freud is a philosopher who is well known for his studies in child development. He believed strongly that the choices that are made for you as a child are ones that will shape who you are as you get older. As far as free will, Freud believes it is something in which we like to think that we have, but really our life is already chosen for us. The way our life is chosen during the child development period is specific and unique for each and every human being because we all encounter different experiences. To Freud, our actions are chosen by an unconscious force, therefore, leaving us no room for free will. As mentioned before, Freud says that we like to think that we have free will, but in reality it is just unconsciously predetermined thoughts which shape our decisions. He argues in Totem


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