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Being ReducedNew Essays on Reduction, Explanation, and Causation$
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Jakob Hohwy and Jesper Kallestrup

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199211531

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199211531.001.0001

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The Exclusion Problem, the Determination Relation, and Contrastive Causation *

The Exclusion Problem, the Determination Relation, and Contrastive Causation *

(p.196) 11 The Exclusion Problem, the Determination Relation, and Contrastive Causation*
Being Reduced

Peter Menzies

Oxford University Press

This chapter critically examines the causal exclusion argument against non-reductive physicalism. It argues that a contrastive account of causation falsifies the exclusion principle when it is formulated in terms of causal sufficiency, but not when it is formulated in terms of difference-making causation. Nonetheless, the causal exclusion argument poses no threat to non-reductive physicalism. For a non-reductive physicalist is still able to reject its conclusion by challenging the principle of the causal closure of the physical. The principle's formulation in terms of difference-making causation makes a much stronger and less plausible claim than its formulation in terms of sufficient causation. For example, when a mental property is the difference-maker of a behavioural property, there may be a physical property that is causally sufficient for the behavioural property, but it need not be a difference-making cause of that property.

Keywords:   causal exclusion, non-reductive physicalism, contrastive causation, causal sufficiency, difference-making, causal closure

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