David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Metaphysica 12 (2):117-124 (2011)
A major criticism of David Lewis’ counterfactual theory of causation is that it allows too many things to count as causes, especially since Lewis allows, in addition to events, absences to be causes as well. Peter Menzies has advanced this concern under the title “the problem of profligate causation.” In this paper, I argue that the problem of profligate causation provides resources for exposing a tension between Lewis’ acceptance of absence causation and his modal realism. The result is a different problem of profligate causation—one that attacks the internal consistency of Lewisian metaphysics rather than employing common sense judgments or intuitions that conflict with Lewis’ extensive list of causes
|Keywords||David Lewis modal realism absence causation profligate causation possible worlds|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Robert Merrihew Adams (1974). Theories of Actuality. Noûs 8 (3):211-231.
Phil Dowe (2004). Causes Are Physically Connected to Their Effects: Why Preventers and Omissions Are Not Causes. In Christopher Hitchcock (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Science. Blackwell Pub.. 189--196.
David Lewis (1973). Causation. Journal of Philosophy 70 (17):556-567.
David Lewis (2000). Causation as Influence. Journal of Philosophy 97 (4):182-197.
David Lewis (2004). Void and Object. In John Collins, Ned Hall & L. A. Paul (eds.), Causation and Counterfactuals. Mit Press. 277-290.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Peter Menzies (2004). Difference-Making in Context. In J. Collins, N. Hall & L. Paul (eds.), Causation and Counterfactuals. Mit Press.
Phil Dowe (2009). Absences, Possible Causation, and the Problem of Non-Locality. The Monist 92 (1):23-40.
Peter Menzies (1989). Probabilistic Causation and Causal Processes: A Critique of Lewis. Philosophy of Science 56 (4):642-663.
Murali Ramachandran (1997). A Counterfactual Analysis of Causation. Mind 106 (422):263-277.
Eduardo García-Ramírez (2012). Trans-World Causation? Philosophical Quarterly 62 (246):71-83.
Laura W. Ekstrom (1998). Freedom, Causation, and the Consequence Argument. Synthese 115 (3):333-54.
Sungho Choi (2005). Understanding the Influence Theory of Causation: A Critique of Strevens. [REVIEW] Erkenntnis 63 (1):101 - 118.
Tomasz Bigaj (2012). Causation Without Influence. Erkenntnis 76 (1):1-22.
Charles Pigden & Rebecca E. B. Entwisle (2012). Spread Worlds, Plenitude and Modal Realism: A Problem for David Lewis. In James Maclaurin (ed.), Rationis Defensor.
Ross P. Cameron (2007). Lewisian Realism: Methodology, Epistemology, and Circularity. Synthese 156 (1):143 - 159.
Stephen Mumford & Rani Lill Anjum (2009). Double Prevention and Powers. Journal of Critical Realism 8 (3):277-293.
David Liebesman (2011). Causation and the Canberra Plan. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 92 (2):232-242.
Added to index2011-07-14
Total downloads92 ( #12,009 of 1,096,391 )
Recent downloads (6 months)13 ( #10,736 of 1,096,391 )
How can I increase my downloads?