Static and dynamic dispositions

Synthese 146 (3):303 - 324 (2005)
When it comes to scientific explanation, our parsimonious tendencies mean that we focus almost exclusively on those dispositions whose manifestations result in some sort of change – changes in properties, locations, velocities and so on. Following this tendency, our notion of causation is one that is inherently dynamic, as if the maintenance of the status quo were merely a given. Contrary to this position, I argue that a complete concept of causation must also account for dispositions whose manifestations involve no changes at all, and that a causal theory that fails to include these ‘static’ dispositions alongside the dynamic ones renders static occurrences miraculous.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy   Epistemology   Logic   Metaphysics   Philosophy of Language
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References found in this work BETA
D. M. Armstrong (1993). A World of States of Affairs. Philosophical Perspectives 7 (3):429-440.
David Lewis (1997). Finkish Dispositions. Philosophical Quarterly 47 (187):143-158.

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