David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Philosophia 41 (3):737-749 (2013)
What caused the event we report by saying “the window shattered”? Was it the baseball, which crashed into the window? Causal exclusionists say: many, many microparticles collectively caused that event—microparticles located where common sense supposes the baseball was. Unitary large objects such as baseballs cause nothing; indeed, by Alexander’s dictum, there are no such objects. This paper argues that the false claim about causal efficacy is instead the one that attributes it to the many microparticles. Causation obtains just where there is an “invariance”, a true generalization to the effect that had things been different with the putative cause, things would have been correspondingly different with the putative effect. But “correspondingly” here requires a rough metric. There must be a fact as to which alternative group events, involving many microparticles, would have departed less from the putative cause of the shattering, and which would have departed more. Surprisingly, there is no such fact
|Keywords||Causal exclusion Familiar objects Invariance Alexander’s Dictum|
|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
James Woodward (2003). Making Things Happen: A Theory of Causal Explanation. Oxford University Press.
Jaegwon Kim (1998). Mind in a Physical World: An Essay on the Mind-Body Problem and Mental Causation. MIT Press.
D. M. Armstrong (1997). A World of States of Affairs. Cambridge University Press.
Jaegwon Kim (1993). Supervenience and Mind. Cambridge University Press.
Donald Davidson (1970). Mental Events. In L. Foster & J. W. Swanson (eds.), Experience and Theory. Humanities Press 79-101.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Crawford L. Elder (2011). Familiar Objects and Their Shadows. Cambridge University Press.
Crawford L. Elder (2007). On the Phenomenon of "Dog-Wise Arrangement". Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):132–155.
Crawford L. Elder (2007). On the Phenomenon of “Dog- Wise Arrangement”. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):132-155.
Eric Yang (2013). Eliminativism, Interventionism and the Overdetermination Argument. Philosophical Studies 164 (2):321-340.
Wim de Muijnck (2002). Causation by Relational Properties. Grazer Philosophische Studien 65 (1):123-137.
Crawford L. Elder (2003). Alexander's Dictum and the Reality of Familiar Objects. Topoi 22 (2):163-171.
Brandon N. Towl (2010). The Individuation of Causal Powers by Events (and Consequences of the Approach). Metaphysica 11 (1):49-61.
Gabriel Segal & Elliott Sober (1991). The Causal Efficacy of Content. Philosophical Studies 63 (July):1-30.
Liam P. Dempsey & Itay Shani (2009). Dynamical Agents: Consciousness, Causation, and Two Specters of Epiphenomenalism. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 8 (2):225-243.
Alison Gopnik, Sorting and Acting with Objects in Early Childhood: An Exploration of the Use of Causal Cues.
Robert Northcott (2005). Pearson's Wrong Turning: Against Statistical Measures of Causal Efficacy. Philosophy of Science 72 (5):900-912.
Danilo Suster (2001). Semifactuals and Epiphenomenalism. Acta Analytica 16 (26):23-43.
Crawford L. Elder (2001). The Problem of Harmonizing Laws. Philosophical Studies 105 (1):25 - 41.
Charles Kemp, Noah D. Goodman & Joshua B. Tenenbaum (2010). Learning to Learn Causal Models. Cognitive Science 34 (7):1185-1243.
Added to index2012-09-05
Total downloads30 ( #125,815 of 1,789,829 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #420,681 of 1,789,829 )
How can I increase my downloads?