A causal argument for dualism

Philosophical Studies 175 (10):2475-2506 (2018)
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Dualism holds that some mental events are fundamental and non-physical. I develop a prima facie plausible causal argument for dualism. The argument has several significant implications. First, it constitutes a new way of arguing for dualism. Second, it provides dualists with a parity response to causal arguments for physicalism. Third, it transforms the dialectical role of epiphenomenalism. Fourth, it refutes the view that causal considerations prima facie support physicalism but not dualism. After developing the causal argument for dualism and drawing out these implications, I subject the argument to a battery of objections. Some prompt revisions to the argument. Others reveal limitations in scope. It falls out of the discussion that the causal argument for dualism is best used against physicalism as a keystone in a divide and conquer strategy.



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Bradford Saad
Oxford University

Citations of this work

Causal closure of the physical, mental causation, and physics.Dejan R. Dimitrijević - 2019 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10 (1):1-22.
Causal closure of the physical, mental causation, and physics.Dejan R. Dimitrijević - 2019 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10 (1):1-22.
Harmony in a panpsychist world.Bradford Saad - 2022 - Synthese 200 (6):1-24.
Two solutions to the neural discernment problem.Bradford Saad - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (10):2837-2850.

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