Interventionism and Epiphenomenalism

Canadian Journal of Philosophy 40 (3):359-383 (2010)
Abstract
In a recent paper, Shapiro and Sober (2007) defend two claims with respect to the master argument for epiphenomenalism, which is designed to rebut non-reductive physicalism: (i) relative to an interventionist account of causation, as most elaborately presented in (Woodward 2003), the master argument turns out to be invalid; and (ii) interventionism provides a means to experimentally uncover micro effects of macro causes. The first part of this paper takes issue with both of these claims by showing that Woodward’s interventionism and non-reductive physicalism are incompatible—contrary to Shapiro’s and Sober’s assessment. The second part then discusses two possible modifications of Woodward’s theory, both of which ensure the compatibility of interventionism and non-reductive physicalism. Nonetheless, it shall turn out that neither of those modifications suits the purposes of non-reductive physicalists.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0045-5091
DOI cjphil201040326
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Interventionism and Causal Exclusion.James Woodward - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (2):303-347.
Causal Exclusion and Causal Bayes Nets.Alexander Gebharter - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 95 (2):353-375.
Interventionist Causal Exclusion and Non-Reductive Physicalism.Michael Baumgartner - 2009 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 23 (2):161-178.
Pluralistic Physicalism and the Causal Exclusion Argument.Markus Eronen - 2012 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 2 (2):219-232.

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