Article

Platitudes and Counterexamples

Peter Menzies

in The Oxford Handbook of Causation

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780199279739
Published online January 2010 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199279739.003.0018

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Philosophy

 Platitudes and Counterexamples

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This article explains the conception of causation as a natural relation in more detail. It outlines some of the features of our use of the causal concept that do not fit with the idea of causation as a natural relation between events. It then outlines the correct explanation of these features, replacing the metaphysical conception of causation with a conception of causation in terms of a contrastive difference-making relation, where the contrasts are determined contextually on the basis of what are often normative considerations.

Keywords: conception of causation; natural relation; platitudes; counterexamples; causal concept; normative considerations

Article.  12840 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy ; Metaphysics ; Philosophy of Language

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