Emergence, Downwards Causation and the Completeness of Physics

Philosophical Quarterly 59 (234):110 - 131 (2009)
Abstract
The 'completeness of physics' is the key premise in the causal argument for physicalism. Standard formulations of it fail to rule out emergent downwards causation. I argue that it must do this if it is tare in a valid causal argument for physicalism. Drawing on the notion of conferring causal power, I formulate a suitable principle, 'strong completeness'. I investigate the metaphysical implications of distinguishing this principle from emergent downwards causation, and I argue that categoricalist accounts of properties are better equipped to sustain the distinction than dispositional essentialist accounts. Finally, I argue that the additional evidence needed for strong completeness renders the causal argument otiose for any properties amenable to scientific reduction.
Keywords Causal closure  Downward causation  Emergence  Properties  Causal argument  Physicalism
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive David Yates, Emergence, Downwards Causation and the Completeness of Physics
External links
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
Alexander Bird (1998). Dispositions and Antidotes. Philosophical Quarterly 48 (191):227-234.

View all 22 references

Citations of this work BETA
Similar books and articles
Agustín Vicente (2006). On the Causal Completeness of Physics. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 20 (2):149 – 171.
R. Philip Buckley (2001). Physicalism and the Problem of Mental Causation. Journal of Philosophical Research 26 (January):155-174.
Richard Corry (2013). Emerging From the Causal Drain. Philosophical Studies 165 (1):29-47.
Simon Prosser (2012). Emergent Causation. Philosophical Studies 159 (1):21-39.
Ned Block (2003). Do Causal Powers Drain Away. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 67 (1):133-150.
Jesper Kallestrup (2006). The Causal Exclusion Argument. Philosophical Studies 131 (2):459-85.
Max Kistler (2010). Mechanisms and Downward Causation. Philosophical Psychology 22 (5):595-609.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

247 ( #1,658 of 1,101,119 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

28 ( #4,083 of 1,101,119 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.