David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philosophical Quarterly 47 (187):178-94 (1997)
Recent discussions of mental causation have focused on three principles: (1) Mental properties are (sometimes) causally relevant to physical effects; (2) mental properties are not physical properties; (3) every physical event has in its causal history only physical events and physical properties. Since these principles seem to be inconsistent, solutions have focused on rejecting one or more of them. But I argue that, in spite of appearances, (1)–(3) are not inconsistent. The reason is that 'properties' is used in different senses in the principles. In (1) and (3), 'properties' should be read as 'tropes' (properties here are particulars), while in (2) 'properties' should read as 'types' (properties here are universals or classes). Although mental types are distinct from physical types, every mental trope is a physical trope. This allows mental properties to be causally relevant to physical effects without violating the closed character of the physical world.
|Keywords||Causation Epiphenomenalism Epistemology Mental Property|
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References found in this work BETA
Jerry A. Fodor (1981). Representations: Philosophical Essays on the Foundations of Cognitive Science. MIT Press.
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Jaegwon Kim (1993). Supervenience and Mind. Cambridge University Press.
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Citations of this work BETA
Robert D. Rupert (2006). Functionalism, Mental Causation, and the Problem of Metaphysically Necessary Effects. Noûs 40 (2):256-83.
Bence Nanay (2012). Perceiving Tropes. Erkenntnis 77 (1):1-14.
Bence Nanay (2011). Do We Sense Modalities with Our Sense Modalities? Ratio 24 (3):299-310.
Hilan Bensusan & Eros de Carvalho (2011). Qualia Qua Qualitons: Mental Qualities as Abstract Particulars. [REVIEW] Acta Analytica 26 (2):155-163.
Eric Marcus (2005). Mental Causation in a Physical World. Philosophical Studies 122 (1):27-50.
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