Journal of Philosophy 111 (7):341-360 (2014)

Authors
Lei Zhong
Chinese University of Hong Kong
Abstract
The Exclusion Argument, which aims to deny the causal efficacy of irreducible mental properties, is probably the most serious challenge to non-reductive physicalism. Many proposed solutions to the exclusion problem can only reject simplified exclusion arguments, but fail to block a sophisticated version I introduce. In this paper, I attempt to show that we can refute the sophisticated exclusion argument by appeal to a sophisticated understanding of causation, what I call the 'Dual-condition Conception of Causation'. Specifically, I argue that the dual-condition account of causation gives strong support to the so-called 'Autonomy Solution', which contends that even if mental properties are unable to cause (fundamental) physical properties, they can still cause higher-level properties (such as mental, behavioral, and social properties)—if so, human agency would be preserved in the physical world.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy
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Reprint years 2014
ISBN(s) 0022-362X
DOI 10.5840/jphil2014111724
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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.
Mental Causation.David Robb & John Heil - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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