Causation: One word, many things

Philosophy of Science 71 (5):805-819 (2004)
Abstract
We currently have on offer a variety of different theories of causation. Many are strikingly good, providing detailed and plausible treatments of exemplary cases; and all suffer from clear counterexamples. I argue that, contra Hume and Kant, this is because causation is not a single, monolithic concept. There are different kinds of causal relations imbedded in different kinds of systems, readily described using thick causal concepts. Our causal theories pick out important and useful structures that fit some familiar cases—cases we discover and ones we devise to fit.
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Citations of this work BETA
Christoph Hoerl (2011). Causal Reasoning. Philosophical Studies 152 (2):167-179.
Denis Walsh (2012). Mechanism and Purpose: A Case for Natural Teleology. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (1):173-181.
Peter Menzies (2012). The Causal Structure of Mechanisms. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (4):796-805.

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