David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
This paper reexamines the case for a proportionality constraint on causation. The general idea behind the proportionality constraint is that causes need the right amount of detail. The cause needs to be detailed enough to be sufficient for the effect yet general enough to be fully relevant to the effect. The case for the proportionality constraint mainly rests on some examples. Suppose we are searching for the cause of an injury: “being hit by a red bus” is too detailed, “being hit” isn't detailed enough, but “being hit by a bus” is about right. This sort of example has undeniable intuitive appeal. However, this intuitive appeal needs to be examined with more care before jumping to conclusions about the metaphysics of causation and the mereology of causal relata. Here, I reexamine the case for a proportionality constraint on causation and compare several pragmatic explanations of our intuitions about Yablo’s examples, in particular a pragmatic explanation that notices the loose use in our naming of causal relata and a pragmatic explanation that appeals to a contrastivist account of causation.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
James Woodward (2010). Causation in Biology: Stability, Specificity, and the Choice of Levels of Explanation. Biology and Philosophy 25 (3):287-318.
Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen (2012). Against the Contrastive Account of Singular Causation. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (1):115-143.
L. Shapiro & E. Sober (2012). Against Proportionality. Analysis 72 (1):89-93.
Frank Hofmann (2007). Causal Powers, Realization, and Mental Causation. Erkenntnis 67 (2):173 - 182.
Thomas D. Bontly (2005). Proportionality, Causation, and Exclusion. Philosophia 32 (1-4):331-348.
Suzanne Uniacke (2011). Proportionality and Self-Defense. Law and Philosophy 30 (3):253-272.
Jurgen Schroder (1999). Mental Causation: The Supervenience Argument and the Proportionality Constraint. In La Filosofia Analitica En El Cambio de Milenio. Santiago de Compostela: S.I.E.U..
Brad Weslake (2013). Proportionality, Contrast and Explanation. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (4):785-797.
Added to index2009-08-30
Total downloads50 ( #30,814 of 1,096,570 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #50,170 of 1,096,570 )
How can I increase my downloads?