Authors
Lei Zhong
Chinese University of Hong Kong
Abstract
A quite popular approach to solving the Causal Exclusion Problem is to adopt a counterfactual theory of causation. In this paper, I distinguish three versions of the Causal Exclusion Argument. I argue that the counterfactualist approach can block the first two exclusion arguments, because the Causal Inheritance Principle and the Upward Causation Principle upon which the two arguments are based respectively are problematic from the perspective of the counterfactual account of causation. However, I attempt to show that the counterfactualist approach is unable to refute a sophisticated version (i.e. the third version) of the exclusion argument in that the Downward Causation Principle, a premise of the third exclusion argument, is actually implied by the counterfactual theory of causation. Therefore, even if other theories of causation might help the non-reductive physicalist to solve the exclusion problem, the counterfactual theory of causation cannot.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy of Mind
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ISBN(s) 0031-8205
DOI 10.1111/j.1933-1592.2010.00415.x
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References found in this work BETA

Physicalism, or Something Near Enough.Jaegwon Kim - 2005 - Princeton University Press.
Causation.David Lewis - 1973 - Journal of Philosophy 70 (17):556-567.
Mental Causation.Stephen Yablo - 1992 - Philosophical Review 101 (2):245-280.
Causation as Influence.David Lewis - 2000 - Journal of Philosophy 97 (4):182-197.

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Citations of this work BETA

Taking Emergentism Seriously.Lei Zhong - 2020 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 98 (1):31-46.
Causal Exclusion and the Limits of Proportionality.Neil McDonnell - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (6):1459-1474.

View all 17 citations / Add more citations

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