Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Eddy Nahmias

Second Advisor

Andrew I. Cohen


Moderate revisionists about moral responsibility, such as Manuel Vargas, attempt to preserve the backward-looking norms that ordinarily guide praise and blame while arguing that these norms are justified because of their effects. However, some doubt that backward-looking norms are good at achieving these effects; this is the objection from inefficacy. In this paper, I introduce an alternative to Vargas’ view that holds that our responsibility practices are a game, as analyzed by Bernard Suits. I argue that this alternative avoids the objection from inefficacy while preserving attractive features of Vargas’ view. Further, I argue that the game view yields benefits over other revisionist views to position the view as a promising account for the justification of our responsibility practices. If our responsibility practices are a game, then it affords the game view a valuable conceptual distinction unavailable on other views and ensures that praise and blame are attributed wholeheartedly.


File Upload Confirmation