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David Lewis (2000). Causation as Influence.

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  1. Aristotelian Essentialism: Essence in the Age of Evolution.Christopher J. Austin - forthcoming - Synthese:1-18.
    The advent of contemporary evolutionary theory ushered in the eventual decline of Aristotelian Essentialism (Æ) – for it is widely assumed that essence does not, and cannot have any proper place in the age of evolution. This paper argues that this assumption is a mistake: if Æ can be suitably evolved, it need not face extinction. In it, I claim that if that theory’s fundamental ontology consists of dispositional properties, and if its characteristic metaphysical machinery is interpreted within the framework (...)
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  2.  42
    Necessary Connections in Context.Alex Kaiserman - 2017 - Erkenntnis 82 (1):45-64.
    This paper combines the ancient idea that causes necessitate their effects with Angelika Kratzer’s semantics of modality. On the resulting view, causal claims quantify over restricted domains of possible worlds determined by two contextually determined parameters. I argue that this view can explain a number of otherwise puzzling features of the way we use and evaluate causal language, including the difference between causing an effect and being a cause of it, the sensitivity of causal judgements to normative facts, and the (...)
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  3.  37
    Causes, Contrasts, and the Non-Identity Problem.Thomas D. Bontly - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (5):1233-1251.
    Can an act harm someone—a future someone, someone who does not exist yet but will—if that person would never exist but for that very action? This is one question raised by the non-identity problem. Many would argue that the answer is No: an action harms someone only insofar as it is worse for her, and an action cannot be worse for someone if she would not exist without it. The first part of this paper contends that the plausibility of the (...)
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  4.  55
    Beneficence and Procreation.Molly Gardner - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (2):321-336.
    Consider a duty of beneficence towards a particular individual, S, and call a reason that is grounded in that duty a “beneficence reason towards S.” Call a person who will be brought into existence by an act of procreation the “resultant person.” Is there ever a beneficence reason towards the resultant person for an agent to procreate? In this paper, I argue for such a reason by appealing to two main premises. First, we owe a pro tanto duty of beneficence (...)
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  5.  69
    Debunking Debunking: A Regress Challenge for Psychological Threats to Moral Judgment.Regina A. Rini - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (3):675-697.
    This paper presents a regress challenge to the selective psychological debunking of moral judgments. A selective psychological debunking argument conjoins an empirical claim about the psychological origins of certain moral judgments to a theoretical claim that these psychological origins cannot track moral truth, leading to the conclusion that the moral judgments are unreliable. I argue that psychological debunking arguments are vulnerable to a regress challenge, because the theoretical claim that ‘such-and-such psychological process is not moral-truth-tracking’ relies upon moral judgments. We (...)
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  6.  20
    Three Kinds of Constructionism: The Role of Metaphor in the Debate Over Niche Constructionism.Emanuele Archetti - 2015 - Biological Theory 10 (2):103-115.
    Throughout the years a lively debate has flourished around niche construction theory. A source of contention has been the distinction between narrow and broad construction activities proposed by critics. Narrow construction is limited to the production of evolutionarily advantageous artifacts while broad construction refers to construction activities that have an impact on the ecosystem but offer little or negative adaptive feedback to the organisms. The first has been acknowledged as relevant to evolutionary studies in that it increases species’ fitness and (...)
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  7.  88
    The Dispositional Genome: Primus Inter Pares.Christopher J. Austin - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (2):227-246.
    According to the proponents of Developmental Systems Theory and the Causal Parity Thesis, the privileging of the genome as “first among equals” with respect to the development of phenotypic traits is more a reflection of our own heuristic prejudice than of ontology - the underlying causal structures responsible for that specified development no more single out the genome as primary than they do other broadly “environmental” factors. Parting with the methodology of the popular responses to the Thesis, this paper offers (...)
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  8.  9
    Causation and Prediction in Epidemiology: A Guide to the “Methodological Revolution”.Alex Broadbent - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 54:72-80.
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  9. Causation, Norms, and Omissions: A Study of Causal Judgments.Randolph Clarke, Joshua Shepherd, John Stigall, Robyn Repko Waller & Chris Zarpentine - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (2):279-293.
    Many philosophical theories of causation are egalitarian, rejecting a distinction between causes and mere causal conditions. We sought to determine the extent to which people's causal judgments discriminate, selecting as causes counternormal events—those that violate norms of some kind—while rejecting non-violators. We found significant selectivity of this sort. Moreover, priming that encouraged more egalitarian judgments had little effect on subjects. We also found that omissions are as likely as actions to be judged as causes, and that counternormative selectivity appears to (...)
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  10.  8
    Causal Networks or Causal Islands? The Representation of Mechanisms and the Transitivity of Causal Judgment.Samuel G. B. Johnson & Woo‐Kyoung Ahn - 2015 - Cognitive Science 39 (7):1468-1503.
    Knowledge of mechanisms is critical for causal reasoning. We contrasted two possible organizations of causal knowledge—an interconnected causal network, where events are causally connected without any boundaries delineating discrete mechanisms; or a set of disparate mechanisms—causal islands—such that events in different mechanisms are not thought to be related even when they belong to the same causal chain. To distinguish these possibilities, we tested whether people make transitive judgments about causal chains by inferring, given A causes B and B causes C, (...)
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  11.  24
    Intrinsic Causation in Humean Supervenience.Daniel Kodaj - 2015 - Ratio 28 (2):135-152.
    The paper investigates whether causation is extrinsic in Humean Supervenience in the sense that being caused by is an intrinsic relation between token causes and effects. The underlying goal is to test whether causality is extrinsic for Humeans and intrinsic for anti-Humeans in this sense. I argue that causation is typically extrinsic in HS, but it is intrinsic to event pairs that collectively exhaust almost the whole of history.
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  12.  29
    Variance, Invariance and Statistical Explanation.D. M. Walsh - 2015 - Erkenntnis 80 (3):469-489.
    The most compelling extant accounts of explanation casts all explanations as causal. Yet there are sciences, theoretical population biology in particular, that explain their phenomena by appeal to statistical, non-causal properties of ensembles. I develop a generalised account of explanation. An explanation serves two functions: metaphysical and cognitive. The metaphysical function is discharged by identifying a counterfactually robust invariance relation between explanans event and explanandum. The cognitive function is discharged by providing an appropriate description of this relation. I offer examples (...)
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  13.  53
    Lewis on Backward Causation.Ryan Wasserman - 2015 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 4 (3):141-150.
    David Lewis famously defends a counterfactual theory of causation and a non-causal, similarity-based theory of counterfactuals. Lewis also famously defends the possibility of backward causation. I argue that this combination of views is untenable—given the possibility of backward causation, one ought to reject Lewis's theories of causation and counterfactuals.
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  14.  72
    Why the Counterfactualist Should Still Worry About Downward Causation.Lei Zhong - 2015 - Erkenntnis 80 (1):159-171.
    In Zhong (Philos Phenomenol Res 83:129–147, 2011; Analysis 72:75–85, 2012), I argued that, contrary to what many people might expect, the counterfactual theory of causation will generate (rather than solve) the exclusion problem. Recently some philosophers raise an incisive objection to this argument. They contend that my argument fails as it equivocates between different notions of a physical realizer (see Christensen and Kallestrup in Analysis 72:513–517, 2012). However, I find that their criticism doesn’t threaten the central idea of my view. (...)
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  15. A Closer Look at Trumping.Sara Bernstein - 2014 - Acta Analytica 1 (1):1-22.
    This paper argues that so-called “trumping preemption” is in fact overdetermination or early preemption, and is thus not a distinctive form of redundant causation. I draw a novel lesson from cases thought to be trumping: that the boundary between preemption and overdetermination should be reconsidered.
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  16. What Causally Insensitive Events Tell Us About Overdetermination.Sara Bernstein - 2014 - Philosophia 1 (4):1-18.
    Suppose that Billy and Suzy each throw a rock at window, and either rock is sufficient to shatter the window. While some consider this a paradigmatic case of causal overdetermination, in which multiple cases are sufficient for an outcome, others consider it a case of joint causation, in which multiple causes are necessary to bring about an effect. Some hold that every case of overdetermination is a case of joint causation underdescribed: at a maximal level of description, every cause is (...)
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  17.  66
    Shifty Talk: Knowledge and Causation.Jessica Brown - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 167 (2):183-199.
    In this paper, I criticise one main strategy for supporting anti-intellectualism, the view that whether a subject knows may depend on the stakes. This strategy appeals to difficulties with developing contextualist and pragmatic treatments of the shiftiness of our talk about knowledge to motivate anti-intellectualism. I criticise this strategy by drawing an analogy between debates about causation and knowledge. In each case, talk about a phenomenon is shifty and contextualist and pragmatic explanations of the shifty talk face the same objections. (...)
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  18.  66
    Replies to Weatherson, Chalmers, Weinberg, and Bengson.Herman Cappelen - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 171 (3):577-600.
    Reply to criticsThe replies in this symposium are some of the most insightful contributions to contemporary metaphilosophy I have read. I wish I had seen them before I wrote Philosophy without Intuitions . It would have made it a better book. I also wish I had space to explore all the important issues raised, but unfortunately, the focus here will have to be on points of disagreement. The replies build on each other—I draw on material from the earlier replies in (...)
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  19.  19
    Stephen Mumford and Rani Lill Anjum, Getting Causes From Powers, Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2011, 272 Pp., GBP 36 , ISBN 978-0-19-969561-4. [REVIEW]Troy Cross - 2014 - Dialectica 68 (4):614-619.
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    Venomous Dinosaurs and Rear-Fanged Snakes: Homology and Homoplasy Characterized. [REVIEW]Adrian Mitchell Currie - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (3):701-727.
    I develop an account of homology and homoplasy drawing on their use in biological inference and explanation. Biologists call on homology and homoplasy to infer character states, support adaptationist explanations, identify evolutionary novelties and hypothesize phylogenetic relationships. In these contexts, the concepts must be understood phylogenetically and kept separate: as they play divergent roles, overlap between the two ought to be avoided. I use these considerations to criticize an otherwise attractive view defended by Gould, Hall, and Ramsey & Peterson. By (...)
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  21.  26
    Major and Minor Groups in Evolution.Peter Gildenhuys - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (1):1-32.
    Kerr and Godfrey-Smith argue that two mathematically equivalent, alternative formal representations drawn from population genetics, the contextualist and collectivist formalisms, may be equally good for quantifying the dynamics of some natural systems, despite important differences between the formalisms. I draw on constraints on causal representation from Woodward (Making things happen, Oxford University Press, New York, 2003) and Eberhardt and Scheines (Philos Sci 74(5):981–995, 2006) to argue that one or the other formalism will be superior for arbitrary natural systems in which (...)
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  22.  15
    Fighting the Good Cause: Meaning, Purpose, Difference, and Choice.David Haig - 2014 - Biology and Philosophy 29 (5):675-697.
    Concepts of cause, choice, and information are closely related. A cause is a choice that can be held responsible. It is a difference that makes a difference. Information about past causes and their effects is a valuable commodity because it can be used to guide future choices. Information about criteria of choice is generated by choosing a subset from an ensemble for ‘reasons’ and has meaning for an interpreter when it is used to achieve an end. Natural selection evolves interpreters (...)
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  23.  64
    Counterfactual Causation and Mental Causation.Jens Harbecke - 2014 - Philosophia 42 (2):363-385.
    Counterfactual conditionals have been appealed to in various ways to show how the mind can be causally efficacious. However, it has often been overestimated what the truth of certain counterfactuals actually indicates about causation. The paper first identifies four approaches that seem to commit precisely this mistake. The arguments discussed involve erroneous assumptions about the connection of counterfactual dependence and genuine causation, as well as a disregard of the requisite evaluation conditions of counterfactuals. In a second step, the paper uses (...)
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  24.  34
    The Structuring Causes of Behavior: Has Dretske Saved Mental Causation?Frank Hofmann & Peter Schulte - 2014 - Acta Analytica 29 (3):267-284.
    Fred Dretske’s account of mental causation, developed in Explaining Behavior and defended in numerous articles, is generally regarded as one of the most interesting and most ambitious approaches in the field. According to Dretske, meaning facts, construed historically as facts about the indicator functions of internal states, are the structuring causes of behavior. In this article, we argue that Dretske’s view is untenable: On closer examination, the real structuring causes of behavior turn out to be markedly different from Dretske’s meaning (...)
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  25.  50
    Moore and Schaffer on the Ontology of Omissions.David Hommen - 2014 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 45 (1):71-89.
    In this paper, I discuss Michael Moore’s and Jonathan Schaffer’s views on the ontology of omissions in context of their stances on the problem of omissive causation. First, I consider, from a general point of view, the question of the ontology of omissions, and how it relates to the problem of omissive causation. Then I describe Moore’s and Schaffer’s particular views on omissions and how they combine with their stances on the problem of omissive causation. I charge Moore and Schaffer (...)
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  26.  28
    Hallucinating Real Things.Steven P. James - 2014 - Synthese 191 (15):3711-3732.
    No particular dagger was the object of Macbeth’s hallucination of a dagger. In contrast, when he hallucinated his former comrade Banquo, Banquo himself was the object of the hallucination. Although philosophers have had much to say about the nature and philosophical import of hallucinations (e.g. Macpherson and Platchias, Hallucination, 2013) and object-involving attitudes (e.g. Jeshion, New essays on singular thought, 2010), their intersection has largely been neglected. Yet, object-involving hallucinations raise interesting questions about memory, perception, and the ways in which (...)
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  27.  10
    The Landscape of Causation.Max Kistler - 2014 - Metascience 23 (3):497-504.
    L. A. Paul and Ned Hall’s book makes an original and important contribution to the philosophical debate on causation. Their aim is not to construct a theory of causation but “to sketch a map” of the “landscape” (1) constituted by a rich set of problem cases and various theories of causation devised to account for them.Chapter 1 presents the scope and aim of the book, justifies the method of evaluating theories of causation by exploring whether they are refuted by counterexamples, (...)
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  28.  22
    Causal Models and Evidential Pluralism in Econometrics.Alessio Moneta & Federica Russo - 2014 - Journal of Economic Methodology 21 (1):54-76.
    Social research, from economics to demography and epidemiology, makes extensive use of statistical models in order to establish causal relations. The question arises as to what guarantees the causal interpretation of such models. In this paper we focus on econometrics and advance the view that causal models are ‘augmented’ statistical models that incorporate important causal information which contributes to their causal interpretation. The primary objective of this paper is to argue that causal claims are established on the basis of a (...)
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  29.  35
    Explanation and Modality: On the Contingency Horn of Blackburn's Dilemma.Vittorio Morato - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (2):327-349.
    Can we explain why some propositions are necessary? Blackburn (Fact, science, and value. Blackwell, Oxford, 1987) has presented a dilemma aimed at showing that the necessity of a proposition cannot be explained either in the case where the explanans is another necessary proposition (necessity horn) or in the case where the explanans is a contingent proposition (contingency horn). Blackburn’s dilemma is intended to show that necessary truth is an explanatorily irreducible kind of truth: there is nothing that explains why propositions (...)
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  30. The Causal Relevance of Content to Computation.Michael Rescorla - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (1):173-208.
    Many philosophers worry that the classical computational theory of mind (CTM) engenders epiphenomenalism. Building on Block’s (1990) discussion, I formulate a particularly troubling version of this worry. I then present a novel solution to CTM’s epiphenomenalist conundrum. I develop my solution within an interventionist theory of causal relevance. My solution departs substantially from orthodox versions of CTM. In particular, I reject the widespread picture of digital computation as formal syntactic manipulation.1.
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  31.  39
    Against Psychological Sequentialism.Huiyuhl Yi - 2014 - Axiomathes 24 (2):247-262.
    Psychological Sequentialism holds that no causal constraint is necessary for the preservation of what matters in survival; rather, it is sufficient for preservation if two groups of mental states are similar enough and temporally close enough. Suppose that one’s body is instantaneously dematerialized and subsequently, by an amazing coincidence, a collection of molecules is configured to form a qualitatively identical human body. According to Psychological Sequentialism, these events preserve what matters in survival. In this article, I examine some of the (...)
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  32. Functionalism and The Independence Problems.Darren Bradley - 2013 - Noûs 47 (1):545-557.
    The independence problems for functionalism stem from the worry that if functional properties are defined in terms of their causes and effects then such functional properties seem to be too intimately connected to these purported causes and effects. I distinguish three different ways the independence problems can be filled out – in terms of necessary connections, analytic connections and vacuous explanations. I argue that none of these present serious problems. Instead, they bring out some important and over-looked features of functionalism.
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  33. Absences and Late Preemption.Oisín Deery - 2013 - Theoria 79 (1):309-325.
    I focus on token, deterministic causal claims as they feature in causal explanations. Adequately handling absences is difficult for most causal theories, including theories of causal explanation. Yet so is adequately handling cases of late preemption. The best account of absence-causal claims as they appear in causal explanations is Jonathan Schaffer's quaternary, contrastive account. Yet Schaffer's account cannot handle preemption. The account that best handles late preemption is James Woodward's interventionist account. Yet Woodward's account is inadequate when it comes to (...)
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  34. Causal Foundationalism, Physical Causation, and Difference-Making.Luke Glynn - 2013 - Synthese 190 (6):1017-1037.
    An influential tradition in the philosophy of causation has it that all token causal facts are, or are reducible to, facts about difference-making. Challenges to this tradition have typically focused on pre-emption cases, in which a cause apparently fails to make a difference to its effect. However, a novel challenge to the difference-making approach has recently been issued by Alyssa Ney. Ney defends causal foundationalism, which she characterizes as the thesis that facts about difference-making depend upon facts about physical causation. (...)
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  35. Metaphysically Reductive Causation.Ned Hall & L. A. Paul - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (1):9-41.
    There are, by now, many rival, sophisticated philosophical accounts of causation that qualify as ‘metaphysically reductive’. This is a good thing: these collective efforts have vastly improved our understanding of causation over the last 30 years or so. They also put us in an excellent position to reflect on some central methodological questions: What exactly is the point of offering a metaphysical reduction of causation? What philosophical scruples ought to guide the pursuit of such a reduction? Finally, how should answers (...)
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  36.  41
    What is the 'Cause' in Causal Decision Theory?Christopher Hitchcock - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (1):129-146.
    A simple counterfactual theory of causation fails because of problems with cases of preemption. This might lead us to expect that preemption will raise problems for counterfactual theories of other concepts that have a causal dimension. Indeed, examples are easy to find. But there is one case where we do not find this. Several versions of causal decision theory are formulated using counterfactuals. This might lead us to expect that these theories will yield the wrong recommendations in cases of preemption. (...)
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  37.  30
    Causal Responsibility and Counterfactuals.David A. Lagnado, Tobias Gerstenberg & Ro'I. Zultan - 2013 - Cognitive Science 37 (6):1036-1073.
    How do people attribute responsibility in situations where the contributions of multiple agents combine to produce a joint outcome? The prevalence of over-determination in such cases makes this a difficult problem for counterfactual theories of causal responsibility. In this article, we explore a general framework for assigning responsibility in multiple agent contexts. We draw on the structural model account of actual causation (e.g., Halpern & Pearl, 2005) and its extension to responsibility judgments (Chockler & Halpern, 2004). We review the main (...)
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  38.  50
    Contrastive Explanation and the Many Absences Problem.Jane Suilin Lavelle, George Botterill & Suzanne Lock - 2013 - Synthese 190 (16):3495-3510.
    We often explain by citing an absence or an omission. Apart from the problem of assigning a causal role to such apparently negative factors as absences and omissions, there is a puzzle as to why only some absences and omissions, out of indefinitely many, should figure in explanations. In this paper we solve this ’many absences problem’ by using the contrastive model of explanation. The contrastive model of explanation is developed by adapting Peter Lipton’s account. What initially appears to be (...)
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  39. Why Historians (and Everyone Else) Should Care About Counterfactuals.Daniel Nolan - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (2):317-335.
    Abstract There are at least eight good reasons practicing historians should concern themselves with counterfactual claims. Furthermore, four of these reasons do not even require that we are able to tell which historical counterfactuals are true and which are false. This paper defends the claim that these reasons to be concerned with counterfactuals are good ones, and discusses how each can contribute to the practice of history. Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-19 DOI 10.1007/s11098-011-9817-z Authors Daniel Nolan, School of Philosophy, (...)
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  40.  33
    Co-Responsibility and Causal Involvement.Björn Petersson - 2013 - Philosophia 41 (3):847-866.
    In discussions of moral responsibility for collectively produced effects, it is not uncommon to assume that we have to abandon the view that causal involvement is a necessary condition for individual co-responsibility. In general, considerations of cases where there is “a mismatch between the wrong a group commits and the apparent causal contributions for which we can hold individuals responsible” motivate this move. According to Brian Lawson, “solving this problem requires an approach that deemphasizes the importance of causal contributions”. Christopher (...)
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  41.  61
    Causality Reunified.Michael Strevens - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (2):299-320.
    Hall has recently argued that there are two concepts of causality, picking out two different kinds of causal relation. McGrath, and Hitchcock and Knobe, have recently argued that the facts about causality depend on what counts as a “default” or “normal” state, or even on the moral facts. In the light of these claims you might be tempted to agree with Skyrms that causal relations constitute, metaphysically speaking, an “amiable jumble”, or with Cartwright that ‘causation’, though a single word, encompasses (...)
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  42.  67
    Causal and Constitutive Explanation Compared.Petri Ylikoski - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (2):277-297.
    This article compares causal and constitutive explanation. While scientific inquiry usually addresses both causal and constitutive questions, making the distinction is crucial for a detailed understanding of scientific questions and their interrelations. These explanations have different kinds of explananda and they track different sorts of dependencies. Constitutive explanations do not address events or behaviors, but causal capacities. While there are some interesting relations between building and causal manipulation, causation and constitution are not to be confused. Constitution is a synchronous and (...)
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  43.  99
    Causation Without Influence.Tomasz Bigaj - 2012 - Erkenntnis 76 (1):1-22.
    David Lewis’s latest theory of causation defines the causal link in terms of the relation of influence between events. It turns out, however, that one event’s influencing another is neither a necessary nor sufficient condition for its being a cause of that event. In the article one particular case of causality without influence is presented and developed. This case not only serves as a counterexample to Lewis’s influence theory, but also threatens earlier counterfactual analyses of causation by admitting a particularly (...)
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  44. Action, Responsibility and the Ability to Do Otherwise.Justin Capes - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 158 (1):1-15.
    Here it is argued that in order for something someone “does” to count as a genuine action, the person needn’t have been able to refrain from doing it. If this is right, then two recent defenses of the principle of alternative possibilities, a version of which says that a person is morally responsible for what he has done only if he could have refrained from doing it, are unsuccessful.
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  45.  55
    Events and Times: A Case Study in Means-Ends Metaphysics.Christopher Hitchcock - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 160 (1):79-96.
    There is a tradition, tracing back to Kant, of recasting metaphysical questions as questions about the utility of a conceptual scheme, linguistic framework, or methodological rule for achieving some particular end. Following in this tradition, I propose a ‘means-ends metaphysics ’, in which one rigorously demonstrates the suitability of some conceptual framework for achieving a specified goal. I illustrate this approach using a debate about the nature of events. Specifically, the question is whether the time at which an event occurs (...)
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  46.  31
    Thought Experiments, Real Experiments, and the Expertise Objection.Christopher Hitchcock - 2012 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 2 (2):205-218.
    It is a commonplace that in philosophy, intuitions supply evidence for and against philosophical theories. Recent work in experimental philosophy has brought to bear the intuitions of philosophically naïve subjects in a number of different ways. One line of response to this work has been to claim that philosophers have expertise that privileges their intuitive judgments, and allows them to disregard the judgments of non-experts. This expertise is supposed to be analogous to the expertise of the mathematician or the physicist. (...)
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  47. Concepts, Analysis, Generics and the Canberra Plan.Mark Johnston & Sarah-Jane Leslie - 2012 - Philosophical Perspectives 26 (1):113-171.
  48.  43
    Précis of Depth. [REVIEW]Michael Strevens - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 84 (2):447-460.
  49. Lewis' Modal Realism and Absence Causation.Joseph A. Baltimore - 2011 - Metaphysica 12 (2):117-124.
    A major criticism of David Lewis’ counterfactual theory of causation is that it allows too many things to count as causes, especially since Lewis allows, in addition to events, absences to be causes as well. Peter Menzies has advanced this concern under the title “the problem of profligate causation.” In this paper, I argue that the problem of profligate causation provides resources for exposing a tension between Lewis’ acceptance of absence causation and his modal realism. The result is a different (...)
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    Trumping and Contrastive Causation.Christopher Hitchcock - 2011 - Synthese 181 (2):227 - 240.
    Jonathan Schaffer introduced a new type of causal structure called 'trumping'. According to Schaffer, trumping is a species of causal preemption. Both Schaffer and I have argued that causation has a contrastive structure. In this paper, I analyze the structure of trumping cases from the perspective of contrastive causation, and argue that the case is much more complex than it first appears. Nonetheless, there is little reason to regard trumping as a species of causal preemption.
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