Last week Lady Geek Girl talked about the way fate and free will tend to be ‘in a relationship and it’s complicated’ in popular fiction.
This week I’m also going to talk about free will, but I’m going to take a different track—I’m going to look at the intersection of free will and personal responsibility.
What exactly do I mean? Well, people have free will. They can do whatever they want. But if it’s within their power to do the right thing, even if it will have unpleasant consequences, do they have a responsibility to do the right thing? Or is it morally acceptable to say, “no, I’m washing my hands of this”? I think that there has to be a balance. In fiction, choosing of one’s own free will has a particular weight and importance.
Before this becomes a Philosophy 101 debate, let me give you some examples to show you what I mean.