Causal Perception and Causal Cognition

Jim Woodward

in Perception, Causation, and Objectivity

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199692040
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729713 | DOI:

Series: Consciousness & Self-Consciousness Series

Causal Perception and Causal Cognition

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This chapter explores the role played by the so-called perception of causation in our more general capacity for causal thinking. I suggest that ordinary adult human causal cognition as well as a great deal of philosophical and psychological theorizing about such cognition is influenced by two different conceptions of causation, one of which is associated with the idea that causes make a difference for their effects and the other of which is associated with idea that causes must be appropriately “connected” to their effects. These conceptions are logically distinct and can yield different causal judgments but are nonetheless usually well-integrated in adult causal thinking. An important developmental question is how such integration occurs.

Keywords: causal perception; causal judgment; causal process theories; causal learning; development of causal reasoning

Chapter.  18012 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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