The determinism is the proposition philosophy that tells us that every event , decision and action is causally determined by an unbroken chain of prior occurrences . This does not necessarily mean that humans have no influence over the future and its events, but rather that the level to which humans have influence over their future depends on the present as well as the past . Taken to its logical extreme, determinism would argue that the Big BangThe initial trigger triggered every action, and possibly a mental thought, through a system of cause and effect. It can be applied to all events that happen in reality or simply to a part of the universe and is considered a universal thought .

What is determinism?

It is the doctrine or theory that ensures that the events that happen in life are or are determined by some reason , which implies that reality is understood as a direct consequence of a cause .

  • Philosophical determinism
  • Other types of determinism
  • Representatives
  • Plays
  • Examples of determinism

Philosophical determinism

What does it consist of

Philosophical determinism tells us that all events are determined by prior causes . It tells us that the universe is rational since absolute knowledge of a situation could reveal its future .

Its bases correspond to the idea that everything can be explained and that everything that is has compelling reasons for being the way it is and not otherwise. Therefore, the individual cannot have any kind of power to choose over his life, since the events that precede it have totally established it.

For them, the future is defined a priori by the present and chance is not part of the cause and effect, in addition, human beings lose responsibility for their actions, because the events are already predetermined.


Philosophical determinism is classified into two different branches:

  • The strong determinism : it says that there are no situations random or random and that the future is predictable from the present. The past can also be predicted when we know a situation in the chain of causality .
  • The weak Determinism : it says that the probability is responsible for the facts present or there is a correlation between the present state and future states.

Other types of determinism

There are different types of determinism, among them we can mention the following:

  • Psychological determinism : there are two ways, one says that man always acts for his own interest and for the benefit of himself; It is known as psychological hedonism . The other says that man acts according to his best reason, for himself or for an external agent.
  • Biological determinism : it tells us that man’s instincts and behaviors are defined by the nature of our genetics.
  • Cultural determinism : explains that culture determines the actions that people take.
  • Geographical determinism : explains that different environmental factors determine the way in which man behaves.
  • Logical determinism : it is based on the notion that argues that the future is defined by the past .
  • Fatalistic determinism : it is close to theology and says that all events are predestined to occur. This thought has no laws and works through the force of a deity.
  • Causal determinism : the events that happen are related to the different events and conditions that happened before them. Everything that happens, including the actions of men and their moral choices , are the consequence of a past event in conjunction with the natural laws of the universe.
  • Theological determinism : it says that what happens is pre-written by a deity because of his omniscience.
  • Linguistic determinism: it  has managed to create its bases over time to organize thoughts and then express them in gestural and spoken and / or written form through reasoning, conceptions and different forms such as cognitive science and also psychoanalysis.


Some of the main representatives of determinism are:

  • Gottfried Leibniz : was a German philosopher, mathematician and politician who wrote “The Principle of Sufficient Reason” a work considered to be the root of philosophical determinism .
  • Pierre-Simon –  Known as the Marquis de Laplace , he was a French astronomer , physicist, and mathematician who worked on classical Newtonian mechanics and introduced determinism to science using the scientific method .
  • Friedrich Ratze : He was a German geographer , exponent of the geographical determinism of the nineteenth century. His works helped the ordering of determinism.
  • Paul Edwards : great Austrian-American moral philosopher .
  • Sam Harris –  American-born philosopher and one of the most influential leading thinkers alive.


Some works that have been written that are related to determinism are the following:

  • Anthropogeography
  • Political geography
  • Hard and soft determinism
  • Free will

Examples of determinism

Some examples of determinism are as follows:

  • The genetic code defines our body.
  • Social, cultural, family and economic factors that modify behavior, as well as educational and learning factors.
  • Economic situation and way of life that determines the behavior.

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