Philosophical Quarterly 57 (228):439–455 (2007)

Authors
Hanoch Ben-Yami
Central European University
Abstract
Dummett and others have failed to show that an effect can precede its cause. Dummett claimed that 'backwards causation' is unproblematic in agentless worlds, and tried to show under what conditions it is rational to believe that even backwards agent-causation occurs. Relying on considerations originating in discussions of special relativity, I show that the latter conditions actually support the view that backwards agent-causation is impossible. I next show that in Dummett's agentless worlds explanation does not necessitate backwards causation. I then show why even relative backwards causation is impossible in his and Tooley's scenarios of parallel processes in which causes apparently act in opposite temporal directions. We thus have good reasons for thinking that backwards causation is impossible
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1467-9213.2007.494.x
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 52,704
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Causation.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Journal of Philosophy 70 (17):556-567.
Bringing About the Past.Michael Dummett - 1964 - Philosophical Review 73 (3):338-359.
Why Cannot an Effect Precede its Cause.Max Black - 1955 - Analysis 16 (3):49-58.

View all 8 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Bilking the Bilking Argument.Rebecca Roache - 2009 - Analysis 69 (4):605-611.
Black on Backwards Causation.Brian Garrett - 2014 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (3):230-233.
On the Epistemic Bilking Argument.Brian Garrett - 2015 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 4 (3):139-140.

View all 7 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Salmon, Statistics, and Backwards Causation.David Papineau - 1978 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1978:302-313.
Backwards Causation.W. S. Anglin - 1980 - Analysis 41 (2):86 - 91.
A Critique of Mellor's Argument Against 'Backwards' Causation.Peter J. Riggs - 1991 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 42 (1):75-86.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total views
138 ( #65,302 of 2,340,062 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
15 ( #41,801 of 2,340,062 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes