Nonreductive physicalism and the limits of the exclusion principle

Journal of Philosophy 106 (9):475-502 (2009)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

It is often argued that higher-level special-science properties cannot be causally efficacious since the lower-level physical properties on which they supervene are doing all the causal work. This claim is usually derived from an exclusion principle stating that if a higher-level property F supervenes on a physical property F* that is causally sufficient for a property G, then F cannot cause G. We employ an account of causation as difference-making to show that the truth or falsity of this principle is a contingent matter and derive necessary and sufficient conditions under which a version of it holds. We argue that one important instance of the principle, far from undermining non-reductive physicalism, actually supports the causal autonomy of certain higher-level properties.

Similar books and articles

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.
Kim on overdetermination, exclusion, and nonreductive physicalism.Paul Raymont - 2003 - In Sven Walter & Heinz-Dieter Heckmann (eds.), Physicalism and Mental Causation. Imprint Academic.
Intralevel mental causation.Andrei A. Buckareff - 2011 - Frontiers of Philosophy in China 6 (3):402-425.
Nonreductive materialism and the problem of causal exclusion.Olga Markič - 2002 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 63 (1):79-88.

Analytics

Added to PP
2009-01-28

Downloads
1,738 (#4,848)

6 months
224 (#8,602)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author Profiles

Christian List
Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München

Citations of this work

Metaphysical Causation.Alastair Wilson - 2018 - Noûs 52 (4):723-751.
Interventionism and Causal Exclusion.James Woodward - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (2):303-347.
Naturalism.Davidn D. Papineau - 2007 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

View all 149 citations / Add more citations