Journal of Consciousness Studies 19 (5-6):57-74 (2012)

Authors
Robert Bishop
Wheaton College, Illinois
Abstract
A much discussed argument in the philosophy of mind against non-reductive physicalism leads to the conclusion that all genuine causes involved in mental phenomena must be reductive physical causes. The latter ostensibly exclude any other causes from having genuine effects in human thought and behaviour. Jaegwon Kim has been the chief exponent of this line of argument, calling it variously the causal exclusion argument or the supervenience argument against non-reductive physicalism. I will analyse this argument and show that some of its key assumptions are unwarranted. Two assumptions on which I will particularly focus are the causal closure of the physical and the prohibition against causal overdetermination when multiple sufficient causes are involved in some effect. The upshot will be that rather than lower-level physical causes always excluding or pre-empting possible mental causes, context plays a key role in determining what kinds of causation are at work in human behaviour and how those causes cooperate.
Keywords Causal Closure of the Physical  Causal overdetermination  Philosophy of Mind  Physicalism
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Taking Emergentism Seriously.Lei Zhong - 2020 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 98 (1):31-46.
Causal closure of the physical, mental causation, and physics.Dejan R. Dimitrijević - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10 (1):1-22.
Causal Closure of the Physical, Mental Causation, and Physics.Dejan R. Dimitrijević - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10 (1):1-22.
Causal Closure of the Physical, Mental Causation, and Physics.Dejan R. Dimitrijević - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 10 (1):1-22.

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