David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Mind and Language 9 (3):336-366 (2000)
The philosophical problem of mental causation concerns a clash between commonsense and scientific views about the causation of human behaviour. On the one hand, commonsense suggests that our actions are caused by our mental states—our thoughts, intentions, beliefs and so on. On the other hand, neuroscience assumes that all bodily movements are caused by neurochemical events. It is implausible to suppose that our actions are causally overdetermined in the same way that the ringing of a bell may be overdetermined by two hammers striking it at the same time. So how are we to reconcile these two views about the causal origins of human behaviour? One philosophical doctrine effects a nice reconciliation. Neuralism, or the token-identity theory, states that every particular mental event is a neurophysiological event and that every action is a physically specifiable bodily movement. If these identities hold, there is no problem of causal overdetermination: the apparently different causal pathways to the behaviour are actually one and the same pathway viewed from different perspectives. This attractively simple view is enjoying a recent revival in fortunes
|Keywords||Behavior Causation Dualism Epistemology Mental Science|
|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
Karen Bennett (2003). Why the Exclusion Problem Seems Intractable and How, Just Maybe, to Tract It. Noûs 37 (3):471-97.
Jens Harbecke (2011). Mind in a Humean World. Metaphysica 12 (2):213-229.
Jens Harbecke (2014). Counterfactual Causation and Mental Causation. Philosophia 42 (2):363-385.
Sven Walter (2007). The Epistemological Approach to Mental Causation. Erkenntnis 67 (2):273 - 285.
Similar books and articles
Peter Alward, Comments on Noa Lathamâ€™s Â€œIs There a Conception of Causation That Gives Rise to a Problem of Mental Causation?Â€.
Thomas Kroedel (2008). Mental Causation as Multiple Causation. Philosophical Studies 139 (1):125-143.
Robert N. Audi (1993). Mental Causation: Sustaining and Dynamic. In John Heil & Alfred R. Mele (eds.), Mental Causation. Oxford University Press.
Jaegwon Kim (1992). The Nonreductivist's Trouble with Mental Causation. In John Heil & Alfred R. Mele (eds.), Mental Causation. Oxford University Press.
David Robb & John Heil, Mental Causation. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Paul M. Pietroski (1994). Mental Causation for Dualists. Mind and Language 9 (3):336-66.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads42 ( #49,283 of 1,692,490 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #78,120 of 1,692,490 )
How can I increase my downloads?