Jaegwon Kim
Last affiliation: Brown University
In this paper I will revisit an argument that I have called “the supervenience argument”; it is sometimes called “the exclusion argument” in the literature. I want to reconsider several aspects of this argument in light of some of the criticisms and comments it has elicited, clarifying some points and offering a slightly reformulated—and improved—version of the argument. My primary aim, however, is to discuss and respond to Ned Block’s edifying and challenging critique of the argument in his “Do Causal Powers Drain Away?”—in particular, his claim that the argument has the consequence that if there is no bottom microphysical level, causal powers will “drain away”, leaving us with no causation anywhere. The supervenience argument was designed to show that on a certain popular and influential view of mentality and its relationship to the physical, mental properties turn out to be epiphenomenal, that is, without causal powers of their own.
Keywords Causation  Generalization  Metaphysics  Properties  Supervenience
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DOI 10.1111/j.1933-1592.2003.tb00030.x
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Construction Area (No Hard Hat Required).Karen Bennett - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 154 (1):79-104.
Emergence: Core Ideas and Issues.Jaegwon Kim - 2006 - Synthese 151 (3):547-559.
From Nihilism to Monism.Jonathan Schaffer - 2007 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 85 (2):175 – 191.
Exclusion Again.Karen Bennett - 2008 - In Jakob Hohwy & Jesper Kallestrup (eds.), Being Reduced: New Essays on Reduction, Explanation, and Causation. Oxford University Press. pp. 280--307.
Causal Exclusion and Causal Bayes Nets.Alexander Gebharter - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 95 (2):353-375.

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