The Deviance in Deviant Causal Chains

Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 4 (2):162-170 (2015)
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Abstract
Causal theories of action, perception and knowledge are each beset by problems of so-called ‘deviant’ causal chains. For each such theory, counterexamples are formed using odd or co-incidental causal chains to establish that the theory is committed to unpalatable claims about some intentional action, about a case of veridical perception or about the acquisition of genuine knowledge. In this paper I will argue that three well-known examples of a deviant causal chain have something in common: they each violate Yablos proportionality constraint on causation. I will argue that this constraint provides the key to saving causal theories from deviant chains.
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Archival date: 2015-04-07
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