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Causal CognitionA Multidisciplinary Debate$
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Dan Sperber, David Premack, and Ann James Premack

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198524021

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198524021.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 18 October 2021

The articulation of circumstance and causal understandings

The articulation of circumstance and causal understandings

(p.557) 18 The articulation of circumstance and causal understandings
Causal Cognition

Gilbert Lewis

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the causal understanding of illness. The data come mainly from accounts of illness in Papau New Guinea, and the discussion is concerned with what people do in naturally occurring circumstances. It is about reasoning in practice by adults who come from a culture which maintains belief in the presence in nature of powers and spirits that can respond to human behaviour. These ideas lie behind various rules for the conduct of daily life. Illness may provoke a special attention to them, in that a description of circumstances can imply a possible interpretation of cause.

Keywords:   causal understanding, illness, reasoning, human behaviour, cause

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