When are individuals accountable for their actions? According to Simon Blackburn’s theory of “Soft Determinism” people are accountable for their actions as long as true and available details is possessed. Blackburn’s short story revises the compatibilist definition several times. The revised definition checks out as follows: The subject acted freely if she could have done otherwise in the best sense. This suggests that she would have done otherwise if she had actually picked differently and, under the impact of other real and available thoughts or factors to consider, she would have picked in a different way.
True and available thoughts and considerations are those that represent her circumstance properly, and are ones that she could reasonably be expected to have taken account; … (Blackburn 150) This definition on compatabibilism states that as soon as one is aware of all of the true and offered info they are responsible for their choices.
Using Blackburn’s theory of compatabilism and comparing it to the characters in Flannery O’Conner’s narrative “A Great male is difficult to discover” one notices that a person can never tell what their choices might bring. Blackburn writes about the most absurd human choices and enjoys the choices that are made. Blackburn would like the grandma in the O’Conner story and her behavior. For example he would have liked how the Grandma manipulates the following circumstances. When she says to her son Bailey that she would not take her own children to a state that a left convict (the misfit) was headed for on vacation. She alters the trip to suit her needs by controling her boy, and she chooses to covertly take her cat. The granny must have thought of the effects and taken into consideration the reality that the cat might get squeamish in the cars and truck. Also after the accident, that is triggered by the loose cat in the car, jumping on her kid Bailey’s neck. The misfit stops with his accomplices to assist the family that is stranded off the side of the roadway.
While the misfit is evaluating the situation, the grandma blurts out “You’re the Misfit! I acknowledged you at the same time”(O’Conner 1208). She should have considered what would take place before she spoke. This might have saved her household from what was about to occur. The grandma then attempts to recuperate her mistake be saying “I know you’re an excellent man. You don’t look a bit like you have common blood. I understand you need to come from good individuals.” (O’Conner 1208). By this time the granny is desperate, she appears to be saying these things just to deceive herself, and her household is assassinated one by one. According to the modified revised definition the grandma could have made a different option with the real and offered details that is supplied to her by the misfit. A different choice might have led to a various outcome. Although she was not responsible for the murder of her family, her choices are the reason the household was on that specific road at that specific time.
On the other hand Bailey knew his mother is aggressive and manipulative. Bailey gives into his mom and his kids by conceding to stop at the plantation at his mother’s request stating “All right, however get this. This is the only time we are going to pick up anything like this. This is the one and only time” (O’Conner 1206). Bailey had the choice, he undoubtedly didn’t want to take the detour, yet he complied with the aid of his mom’s manipulation. According to Blackburn’s theory, Bailey is responsible once he has true and offered details. Blackburn reaction to Bailey might be that because he had true and offered information about his mom that he need to have made different decisions; particularly because he was the one driving, you can’t get more control than that. As soon as the Misfit and his accomplices decide to murder the household, Bailey knows what is going to take place and he states” Listen we’re in a horrible situation! No one realizes what this is”(O’Conner 1209).
Although there is no right or wrong decision there are useful and nonbeneficial decisions. Bailey picked to do nothing, that choice was nonbeneficial to his entire household. Bailey could have picked differently in every step along the way. The ideas and factor to consider vary from individual to individual as do intentions. Bailey wanted to take his family on a vacation. The grandma wishes to visit her buddies in a various state. Who is to state who was ideal and wrong, it is more about the choices one makes that shape who they are. Bailey is an upset pushover and the granny is manipulative and conniving towards her boy and his family. I make certain if the grandma knew she would encounter the Misfit, she would not have actually asked the household to take that path. Similarly Bailey would not have actually gone down that roadway at his mom’s demand if he any hint of the coming events. The point is our decisions are our obligation. These decisions assist to make Blackburn’s point that people can make different options with all of the real and offered info.
– O’Conner, Flannery, “A Great Male is tough to find”, The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction. Bausch, Richard and Cassill R.V., Seventh Edition, W.W. Norton and Business Inc.,2006 – Blackburn, Simon, “Soft Determinism”, Principles for Modern Life Abelson, Raziel and Friquegnon, Marie-Louise, Sixth Edition Boston, Bedford/St. Martin’s,2003