Results for 'Downward causation'

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  1. Emergence, Downwards Causation and the Completeness of Physics.David Yates - 2009 - Philosophical Quarterly 59 (234):110-131.
    The 'completeness of physics' is the key premise in the causal argument for physicalism. Standard formulations of it fail to rule out emergent downwards causation. I argue that it must do this if it is tare in a valid causal argument for physicalism. Drawing on the notion of conferring causal power, I formulate a suitable principle, 'strong completeness'. I investigate the metaphysical implications of distinguishing this principle from emergent downwards causation, and I argue that categoricalist accounts of properties (...)
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  2. Making Sense of Downward Causation in Manipulationism (with Illustrations From Cancer Research).Christophe Malaterre - 2011 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences (33):537-562.
    Many researchers consider cancer to have molecular causes, namely mutated genes that result in abnormal cell proliferation (e.g. Weinberg 1998). For others, the causes of cancer are to be found not at the molecular level but at the tissue level where carcinogenesis consists of disrupted tissue organization with downward causation effects on cells and cellular components (e.g. Sonnenschein and Soto 2008). In this contribution, I ponder how to make sense of such downward causation claims. Adopting a (...)
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  3. Mental Causation Without Downward Causation.John Gibbons - 2006 - Philosophical Review 115 (1):79-103.
    The problem of downward causation is that an intuitive response to an intuitive picture leads to counterintuitive results. Suppose a mental event, m1, causes another mental event, m2. Unless the mental and the physical are completely independent, there will be a physical event in your brain or your body or the physical world as a whole that underlies this event. The mental event occurs at least partly in virtue of the physical event’s occurring. And the same goes for (...)
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  4.  81
    Making Sense of Downward Causation in Manipulationism. Illustrations From Cancer Research.Christophe Malaterre - 2011 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 4 (33):537-562.
    Many researchers consider cancer to have molecular causes, namely mutated genes that result in abnormal cell proliferation (e.g. Weinberg 1998); yet for others, the causes of cancer are to be found not at the molecular level but at the tissue level and carcinogenesis would consist in a disrupted tissue organization with downward causation effects on cells and cellular components (e.g. Sonnenschein & Soto 2008). In this contribution, I ponder how to make sense of such downward causation (...)
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  5. The Metaphysics of Downward Causation: Rediscovering the Formal Cause.Mariusz Tabaczek - 2013 - Zygon 48 (2):380-404.
    The methodological nonreductionism of contemporary biology opens an interesting discussion on the level of ontology and the philosophy of nature. The theory of emergence (EM), and downward causation (DC) in particular, bring a new set of arguments challenging not only methodological, but also ontological and causal reductionism. This argumentation provides a crucial philosophical foundation for the science/theology dialogue. However, a closer examination shows that proponents of EM do not present a unified and consistent definition of DC. Moreover, they (...)
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  6. No Levels, No Problems: Downward Causation in Neuroscience.Markus Eronen - 2013 - Philosophy of Science 80 (5):1042-1052.
    I show that the recent account of levels in neuroscience proposed by Craver and Bechtel is unsatisfactory since it fails to provide a plausible criterion for being at the same level and is incompatible with Craver and Bechtel’s account of downward causation. Furthermore, I argue that no distinct notion of levels is needed for analyzing explanations and causal issues in neuroscience: it is better to rely on more well-defined notions such as composition and scale. One outcome of this (...)
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  7. Emergence and Downward Causation.Cynthia Macdonald & Graham Macdonald - 2010 - In Cynthia Macdonald & Graham Macdonald (eds.), Emergence in Mind. Oxford University Press.
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  8. How Downwards Causation Occurs in Digital Computers.George Ellis - manuscript
    Digital computers carry out algorithms coded in high level programs. These abstract entities determine what happens at the physical level: they control whether electrons flow through specific transistors at specific times or not, entailing downward causation in both the logical and implementation hierarchies. This paper explores how this is possible in the light of the alleged causal completeness of physics at the bottom level, and highlights the mechanism that enables strong emergence (the manifest causal effectiveness of application programs) (...)
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  9. The Compatibility of Downward Causation and Emergence.Simone Gozzano - 2017 - In Francesco Orilia & Michele Paolini Paoletti (eds.), Philosophical and Scientific Perspectives on Downward Causation. New York, uSA: Routledge. pp. 296-312.
    In this paper, I shall argue that both emergence and downward causation, which are strongly interconnected, presuppose the presence of levels of reality. However, emergence and downward causation pull in opposite directions with respect to my best reconstruction of what levels are. The upshot is that emergence stresses the autonomy among levels while downward causation puts the distinction between levels at risk of a reductio ad absurdum, with the further consequence of blurring the very (...)
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  10. Emergent Causation.Simon Prosser - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 159 (1):21-39.
    Downward causation is commonly held to create problems for ontologically emergent properties. In this paper I describe two novel examples of ontologically emergent properties and show how they avoid two main problems of downward causation, the causal exclusion problem and the causal closure problem. One example involves an object whose colour does not logically supervene on the colours of its atomic parts. The other example is inspired by quantum entanglement cases but avoids controversies regarding quantum mechanics. (...)
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  11. Causation, Exclusion, and the Special Sciences.Panu Raatikainen - 2010 - Erkenntnis 73 (3):349-363.
    The issue of downward causation (and mental causation in particular), and the exclusion problem is discussed by taking into account some recent advances in the philosophy of science. The problem is viewed from the perspective of the new interventionist theory of causation developed by Woodward. It is argued that from this viewpoint, a higher-level (e.g., mental) state can sometimes truly be causally relevant, and moreover, that the underlying physical state which realizes it may fail to be (...)
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  12. Downward Determination in Semiotic Multi-Level Systems.Joao Queiroz & Charbel El-Hani - 2012 - Cybernetics and Human Knowing -- A Journal of Second Order Cybernetics, Autopoiesis & Semiotics 1 (2):123-136.
    Peirce's pragmatic notion of semiosis can be described in terms of a multi-level system of constraints involving chance, efficient, formal and final causation. According to the model proposed here, law-like regularities, which work as boundary conditions or organizational principles, have a downward effect on the spatiotemporal distribution of lower-level semiotic items. We treat this downward determinative influence as a propensity relation: if some lower-level entities a,b,c,-n are under the influence of a general organizational principle, W, they will (...)
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  13. Non-Reductive Physicalism, Mental Causation and the Nature of Actions.Markus E. Schlosser - 2009 - In H. Leitgeb & A. Hieke (eds.), Reduction: Between the Mind and the Brain. Ontos.
    Given some reasonable assumptions concerning the nature of mental causation, non-reductive physicalism faces the following dilemma. If mental events cause physical events, they merely overdetermine their effects (given the causal closure of the physical). If mental events cause only other mental events, they do not make the kind of difference we want them to. This dilemma can be avoided if we drop the dichotomy between physical and mental events. Mental events make a real difference if they cause actions. But (...)
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  14.  35
    Ethical Emergentism and Moral Causation.Ryan Stringer - 2021 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 18 (4):331-362.
    This paper focuses on a recently articulated, emergentist conception of ethical naturalism and its commitment to causal efficacy, or the idea that moral properties have causal powers, along with its supporting commitment to moral causation. After I reconstruct the theory, I explain how it offers some interesting theoretical benefits to moral realists in virtue of its commitment to causal efficacy. Then, after locating some examples of moral causation in support of this commitment, I present and respond to five (...)
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  15. El yo como causa.Juan José Sanguineti - 2010 - Sapientia 66:23-39.
    This paper aims to explain how the human Self can be said a cause of his/her free actions, especially when they are voluntary and physical. First it is analyzed the natural causation in the physical world, particularly in self-organized living beings and afterwards in animal intentional behaviour, which is guided by cognition and emotions. An important distinction between downward causation and bottom-up causation is useful to explain the complex causality in self-organized intentional beings. Downward (...), coming from a higher level, has in influence over lower ontological levels. Bottom-up causation operates inversely. It is also drawn a distinction between the “natural Self” (nature enhanced by habits) and the “intentional Self” (a subject endowed with consciousness and the power of controlling operations). This framework is applied to man, whose higher downward causality comes from the person (intellect and free will) and, guiding the sensitive lower layer of his/her nature, reaches in a quite natural way the voluntary control of the body. (shrink)
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  16. Abstractions and Implementations.Russ Abbott - manuscript
    Fundamental to Computer Science is the distinction between abstractions and implementations. When that distinction is applied to various philosophical questions it yields the following conclusions. -/- • EMERGENCE. It isn’t as mysterious as it’s made out to be; the possibility of strong emergence is not a threat to science. -/- • INTERACTIONS BETWEEN HIGHER-LEVEL ENTITIES. Physical interaction among higher-level entities is illusory. Abstract interactions are the source of emergence, new domains of knowledge, and complex systems. -/- • PHYSICS and the (...)
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  17.  51
    Rule-Based and Rule-Generating Systems.Niels Ole Finnemann - 2000 - In P. B. Andersen, Claus Emmeche, N. O. Finnemann & P. V. Christiansen (eds.), Downward Causation. Aarhus, Denmark: University of Aarhus Press. pp. 278-301.
    The article discusses the limitations of psycho-physical parallellism and the implications of a pscycho-physical interaction paradigm considering the notion Downward Causation. The focus is on the notion of levels in nature and their interrelations, and it argues that the notion of rule-based systems should be considered a subcategory of rule-generating systems partly based on redundancy functions rather than rules.
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  18.  56
    Constraints on the Origin of Coherence in Far-From-Equilibrium Systems.Joseph E. Earley - 2003 - In Timothy E. Eastman & Henry Keeton (eds.), Physics and Whitehead: Quantum, Process and Experience. Albany: State University of New York Press. pp. 63-73.
    Origin of a dissipative structure in a chemical dynamic system: occurs under the following constraints: 1) Affinity must be high. (The system must be far from equilibrium.); 2) There must be an auto-catalytic process; 3) A process that reduces the concentration of the auto-catalyst must operate; 4) The relevant parameters (rate constants, etc.) must lie in a range corresponding to a limit cycle trajectory. That is, there must be closure of the network of reaction such that a state sufficiently close (...)
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  19.  74
    The Strong Emergence of Molecular Structure.Vanessa A. Seifert - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10 (3):1-25.
    One of the most plausible and widely discussed examples of strong emergence is molecular structure. The only detailed account of it, which has been very influential, is due to Robin Hendry and is formulated in terms of downward causation. This paper explains Hendry’s account of the strong emergence of molecular structure and argues that it is coherent only if one assumes a diachronic reflexive notion of downward causation. However, in the context of this notion of (...) causation, the strong emergence of molecular structure faces three challenges that have not been met and which have so far remained unnoticed. First, the putative empirical evidence presented for the strong emergence of molecular structure equally undermines supervenience, which is one of the main tenets of strong emergence. Secondly, it is ambiguous how the assumption of determinate nuclear positions is invoked for the support of strong emergence, as the role of this assumption in Hendry’s argument can be interpreted in more than one way. Lastly, there are understandings of causation which render the postulation of a downward causal relation between a molecule’s structure and its quantum mechanical entities, untenable. (shrink)
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  20.  53
    Normativity and Naturalism as If Nature Mattered.Andrew Sayer - 2019 - Journal of Critical Realism 18 (3):258-273.
    The usual way of discussing normativity and naturalism is by running through a standard range of issues: the relations of fact and value, objectivity, reason and emotion, is and ought, and the so-called ‘naturalistic fallacy’. This is a naturalism that is virtually silent on nature. I outline an alternative approach that relates normativity to our nature as living beings, for whom specific things are good or bad for us. Our nature as evaluative beings is shown to be rooted in and (...)
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  21. Emergentisms, Ancient and Modern.J. Ganeri - 2011 - Mind 120 (479):671-703.
    Jaegwon Kim has argued (Kim 2006a) that the two key issues for emergentism are to give a positive characterization of the emergence relation and to explain the possibility of downward causation. This paper proposes an account of emergence which provides new answers to these two key issues. It is argued that an appropriate emergence relation is characterized by a notion of ‘transformation’, and that the real key issue for emergentism is located elsewhere than the places Kim identifies. The (...)
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  22. Neural Synchrony and the Causal Efficacy of Consciousness.David Yates - 2020 - Topoi 39 (5):1057-1072.
    The purpose of this paper is to address a well-known dilemma for physicalism. If mental properties are type identical to physical properties, then their causal efficacy is secure, but at the cost of ruling out mentality in creatures very different to ourselves. On the other hand, if mental properties are multiply realizable, then all kinds of creatures can instantiate them, but then they seem to be causally redundant. The causal exclusion problem depends on the widely held principle that realized properties (...)
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  23. Demystifying Emergence.David Yates - 2016 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 3:809-841.
    Are the special sciences autonomous from physics? Those who say they are need to explain how dependent special science properties could feature in irreducible causal explanations, but that’s no easy task. The demands of a broadly physicalist worldview require that such properties are not only dependent on the physical, but also physically realized. Realized properties are derivative, so it’s natural to suppose that they have derivative causal powers. Correspondingly, philosophical orthodoxy has it that if we want special science properties to (...)
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  24. From Physics to Biology by Extending Criticality and Symmetry Breakings.Giuseppe Longo & Maël Montévil - 2011 - Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology 106:340 - 347.
    Symmetries play a major role in physics, in particular since the work by E. Noether and H. Weyl in the first half of last century. Herein, we briefly review their role by recalling how symmetry changes allow to conceptually move from classical to relativistic and quantum physics. We then introduce our ongoing theoretical analysis in biology and show that symmetries play a radically different role in this discipline, when compared to those in current physics. By this comparison, we stress that (...)
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  25. Nonreductive Physicalism and the Limits of the Exclusion Principle.Christian List & Peter Menzies - 2009 - Journal of Philosophy 106 (9):475-502.
    It is often argued that higher-level special-science properties cannot be causally efficacious since the lower-level physical properties on which they supervene are doing all the causal work. This claim is usually derived from an exclusion principle stating that if a higherlevel property F supervenes on a physical property F* that is causally sufficient for a property G, then F cannot cause G. We employ an account of causation as differencemaking to show that the truth or falsity of this principle (...)
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  26. Emergence Within Social Systems.Kenneth Silver - forthcoming - Synthese:1-23.
    Emergence is typically discussed in the context of mental properties or the properties of the natural sciences, and accounts of emergence within these contexts tend to look a certain way. The emergent property is taken to emerge instantaneously out of, or to be proximately caused by, complex interaction of colocated entities. Here, I focus on the properties instantiated by the elements of certain systems discussed in social ontology, such as being a five-dollar bill or a pawn-movement, and I suggest that (...)
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  27.  59
    Life in the Interstices: Systems Biology and Process Thought.Joseph E. Earley - 2014 - In Spyridon A. Koutroufinis (ed.), Life and Process: Towards a New Biophilosophy. De Gruyter. pp. 157-170.
    When a group of processes achieves such closure that a set of states of affairs recurs continually, then the effect of that coherence on the world differs from what would occur in the absence of that closure. Such altered effectiveness is an attribute of the system as a whole, and would have consequences. This indicates that the network of processes, as a unit, has ontological significance. Whenever a network of processes generates continual return to a limited set of states of (...)
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  28. Free Will of an Ontologically Open Mind.Jan Scheffel - manuscript
    The problem of free will has persistently resisted a solution throughout centuries. There is reason to believe that new elements need to be introduced into the analysis in order to make progress. In the present physicalist approach, these elements are emergence and information theory in relation to universal limits set by quantum physics. Furthermore the common, but vague, characterization of free will as "being able to act differently" is, in the spirit of Carnap, rephrased into an explicatum more suitable for (...)
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  29. Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness: Thoughts on a Causal Correspondence Theory.Ian J. Thompson - 2017 - In S. Gosh (ed.), Quantum Physics & Consciousness - Thoughts of Founding Fathers of Quantum Physics and other Renowned Scholars. Kolkata, India: Bhaktivedanta Institute. pp. 173-185.
    Which way does causation proceed? The pattern in the material world seems to be upward: particles to molecules to organisms to brains to mental processes. In contrast, the principles of quantum mechanics allow us to see a pattern of downward causation. These new ideas describe sets of multiple levels in which each level influences the levels below it through generation and selection. Top-down causation makes exciting sense of the world: we can find analogies in psychology, in (...)
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  30. Non-Genetic Inheritance: Evolution Above the Organismal Level.Anton Sukhoverkhov & Nathalie Gontier - 2021 - Biosystems 1 (200):104325.
    The article proposes to further develop the ideas of the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis by including into evolutionary research an analysis of phenomena that occur above the organismal level. We demonstrate that the current Extended Synthesis is focused more on individual traits (genetically or non-genetically inherited) and less on community system traits (synergetic/organizational traits) that characterize transgenerational biological, ecological, social, and cultural systems. In this regard, we will consider various communities that are made up of interacting populations, and for which the (...)
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  31. Causation, Norm Violation, and Culpable Control.Mark Alicke, David Rose & Dori Bloom - 2011 - Journal of Philosophy 108 (12):670-696.
    Causation is one of philosophy's most venerable and thoroughly-analyzed concepts. However, the study of how ordinary people make causal judgments is a much more recent addition to the philosophical arsenal. One of the most prominent views of causal explanation, especially in the realm of harmful or potentially harmful behavior, is that unusual or counternormative events are accorded privileged status in ordinary causal explanations. This is a fundamental assumption in psychological theories of counterfactual reasoning, and has been transported to philosophy (...)
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  32. Downward Mobility and Rawlsian Justice.Govind Persad - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (2):277-300.
    Technological and societal changes have made downward social and economic mobility a pressing issue in real-world politics. This article argues that a Rawlsian society would not provide any special protection against downward mobility, and would act rightly in declining to provide such protection. Special treatment for the downwardly mobile can be grounded neither in Rawls’s core principles—the basic liberties, fair equality of opportunity, and the difference principle—nor in other aspects of Rawls’s theory. Instead, a Rawlsian society is willing (...)
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  33. Causation and Time Reversal.Matt Farr - 2020 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 71 (1):177-204.
    What would it be for a process to happen backwards in time? Would such a process involve different causal relations? It is common to understand the time-reversal invariance of a physical theory in causal terms, such that whatever can happen forwards in time can also happen backwards in time. This has led many to hold that time-reversal symmetry is incompatible with the asymmetry of cause and effect. This article critiques the causal reading of time reversal. First, I argue that the (...)
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  34. Agent Causation as the Solution to All the Compatibilist’s Problems.Ned Markosian - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 157 (3):383-398.
    In a recent paper I argued that agent causation theorists should be compatibilists. In this paper, I argue that compatibilists should be agent causation theorists. I consider six of the main problems facing compatibilism: (i) the powerful intuition that one can't be responsible for actions that were somehow determined before one was born; (ii) Peter van Inwagen's modal argument, involving the inference rule (β); (iii) the objection to compatibilism that is based on claiming that the ability to do (...)
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  35. Causation and Its Basis in Fundamental Physics.Douglas Kutach - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    I provide a comprehensive metaphysics of causation based on the idea that fundamentally things are governed by the laws of physics, and that derivatively difference-making can be assessed in terms of what fundamental laws of physics imply for hypothesized events. Highlights include a general philosophical methodology, the fundamental/derivative distinction, and my mature account of causal asymmetry.
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  36. Causation as Simultaneous and Continuous.Michael Huemer & Ben Kovitz - 2003 - Philosophical Quarterly 53 (213):556–565.
    We propose that all actual causes are simultaneous with their direct effects, as illustrated by both everyday examples and the laws of physics. We contrast this view with the sequential conception of causation, according to which causes must occur prior to their effects. The key difference between the two views of causation lies in differing assumptions about the mathematical structure of time.
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  37. Agent Causation as a Solution to the Problem of Action.Michael Brent - 2017 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 47 (5):656-673.
    My primary aim is to defend a nonreductive solution to the problem of action. I argue that when you are performing an overt bodily action, you are playing an irreducible causal role in bringing about, sustaining, and controlling the movements of your body, a causal role best understood as an instance of agent causation. Thus, the solution that I defend employs a notion of agent causation, though emphatically not in defence of an account of free will, as most (...)
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  38. Demoralizing Causation.David Danks, David Rose & Edouard Machery - 2013 - Philosophical Studies (2):1-27.
    There have recently been a number of strong claims that normative considerations, broadly construed, influence many philosophically important folk concepts and perhaps are even a constitutive component of various cognitive processes. Many such claims have been made about the influence of such factors on our folk notion of causation. In this paper, we argue that the strong claims found in the recent literature on causal cognition are overstated, as they are based on one narrow type of data about a (...)
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  39. Causation, Norms, and Omissions: A Study of Causal Judgments.Randolph Clarke, Joshua Shepherd, John Stigall, Robyn Repko Waller & Chris Zarpentine - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (2):279-293.
    Many philosophical theories of causation are egalitarian, rejecting a distinction between causes and mere causal conditions. We sought to determine the extent to which people's causal judgments discriminate, selecting as causes counternormal events—those that violate norms of some kind—while rejecting non-violators. We found significant selectivity of this sort. Moreover, priming that encouraged more egalitarian judgments had little effect on subjects. We also found that omissions are as likely as actions to be judged as causes, and that counternormative selectivity appears (...)
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  40. Probabilistic Causation and Causal Processes: A Critique of Lewis.Peter Menzies - 1989 - Philosophy of Science 56 (4):642-663.
    This paper examines a promising probabilistic theory of singular causation developed by David Lewis. I argue that Lewis' theory must be made more sophisticated to deal with certain counterexamples involving pre-emption. These counterexamples appear to show that in the usual case singular causation requires an unbroken causal process to link cause with effect. I propose a new probabilistic account of singular causation, within the framework developed by Lewis, which captures this intuition.
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  41. Causation, Physics, and Fit.Christian Loew - 2017 - Synthese 194 (6):1945–1965.
    Our ordinary causal concept seems to fit poorly with how our best physics describes the world. We think of causation as a time-asymmetric dependence relation between relatively local events. Yet fundamental physics describes the world in terms of dynamical laws that are, possible small exceptions aside, time symmetric and that relate global time slices. My goal in this paper is to show why we are successful at using local, time-asymmetric models in causal explanations despite this apparent mismatch with fundamental (...)
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  42. Mental Causation and Mental Reality.Tim Crane - 1992 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 92:185-202.
    The Problems of Mental Causation. Functionalism in the philosophy of mind identifies mental states with their dispositional connections with other mental states, perceptions and actions. Many theories of the mind have sailed under the Functionalist flag. But what I take to be essential to Functionalism is that mental states are individuated causally: the reality of mental states depends essentially on their causal efficacy.
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  43. Causation and Determinable Properties : On the Efficacy of Colour, Shape, and Size.Tim Crane - 2008 - In Jakob Hohwy & Jesper Kallestrup (eds.), Being Reduced: New Essays on Reduction, Explanation, and Causation. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 176-195.
    This paper presents a puzzle or antinomy about the role of properties in causation. In theories of properties, a distinction is often made between determinable properties, like red, and their determinates, like scarlet (see Armstrong 1978, volume II). Sometimes determinable properties are cited in causal explanations, as when we say that someone stopped at the traffic light because it was red. If we accept that properties can be among the relata of causation, then it can be argued that (...)
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  44. Mental Causation, Interventions, and Contrasts (2006).Panu Raatikainen -
    The problem of mental causation is discussed by taking into account some recent developments in the philosophy of science. The problem is viewed from the perspective of the new interventionist theory of causation developed by Woodward. The import of the idea that causal claims involve contrastive classes in mental causation is also discussed. It is argued that mental causation is much less a problem than it has appeared to be.
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  45. Causation, Intervention and Agency—Woodward on Menzies and Price.Huw Price - 2017 - In Helen Beebee, Christopher Hitchcock & Huw Price (eds.), Making a Difference. Oxford, UK: pp. 73-98.
    In his influential book 'Making Things Happen' and in other places, Jim Woodward has noted some affinities between his own account of causation and that of Menzies and Price, but argued that the latter view is implausibly ‘subjective’. In this piece I discuss Woodward’s criticisms. I argue that the Menzies and Price view is not as different from Woodward’s own account as he believes, and that in so far as it is different, it has some advantages whose importance Woodward (...)
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  46. Patterns, Information, and Causation.Holly Andersen - 2017 - Journal of Philosophy 114 (11):592-622.
    This paper articulates an account of causation as a collection of information-theoretic relationships between patterns instantiated in the causal nexus. I draw on Dennett’s account of real patterns to characterize potential causal relata as patterns with specific identification criteria and noise tolerance levels, and actual causal relata as those patterns instantiated at some spatiotemporal location in the rich causal nexus as originally developed by Salmon. I develop a representation framework using phase space to precisely characterize causal relata, including their (...)
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  47. Causation: Empirical Trends and Future Directions.David Rose & David Danks - 2012 - Philosophy Compass 7 (9):643-653.
    Empirical research has recently emerged as a key method for understanding the nature of causation, and our concept of causation. One thread of research aims to test intuitions about the nature of causation in a variety of classic cases. These experiments have principally been used to try to resolve certain debates within analytic philosophy, most notably that between proponents of transference and dependence views of causation. The other major thread of empirical research on our concept of (...)
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  48. Agent Causation and the Phenomenology of Agency.Randolph Clarke - 2019 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 100 (3):747-764.
    Several philosophers claim that the phenomenology of one’s own agency conflicts with standard causal theories of action, couched in terms of causation by mental events or states. Others say that the phenomenology is prima facie incompatible with such a theory, even if in the end a reconciliation can be worked out. Here it is argued that the type of action theory in question is consistent with what can plausibly be said to be presented to us in our experience of (...)
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  49. Inferring Causation in Epidemiology: Mechanisms, Black Boxes, and Contrasts.Alex Broadbent - 2011 - In Phyllis McKay Illari, Federica Russo & Jon Williamson (eds.), Causality in the Sciences. Oxford University Press. pp. 45--69.
    This chapter explores the idea that causal inference is warranted if and only if the mechanism underlying the inferred causal association is identified. This mechanistic stance is discernible in the epidemiological literature, and in the strategies adopted by epidemiologists seeking to establish causal hypotheses. But the exact opposite methodology is also discernible, the black box stance, which asserts that epidemiologists can and should make causal inferences on the basis of their evidence, without worrying about the mechanisms that might underlie their (...)
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  50. Probabilistic Causation and the Explanatory Role of Natural Selection.Pablo Razeto-Barry & Ramiro Frick - 2011 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 42 (3):344-355.
    The explanatory role of natural selection is one of the long-term debates in evolutionary biology. Nevertheless, the consensus has been slippery because conceptual confusions and the absence of a unified, formal causal model that integrates different explanatory scopes of natural selection. In this study we attempt to examine two questions: (i) What can the theory of natural selection explain? and (ii) Is there a causal or explanatory model that integrates all natural selection explananda? For the first question, we argue that (...)
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