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Explanation Beyond CausationPhilosophical Perspectives on Non-Causal Explanations$
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Alexander Reutlinger and Juha Saatsi

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198777946

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198777946.001.0001

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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 September 2021

Extending the Counterfactual Theory of Explanation

Extending the Counterfactual Theory of Explanation

(p.74) 4 Extending the Counterfactual Theory of Explanation
Explanation Beyond Causation

Alexander Reutlinger

Oxford University Press

In the recent debate on explanation philosophers tend to agree that the natural and social sciences do not only provide causal but also non-causal explanations. It is a challenging aspect of this agreement that currently dominant causal accounts of explanation fail to cover non-causal types of explanation. So, how shall we react to this challenge? The goal of this chapter is to articulate and to extend the counterfactual theory of explanation (CTE). The CTE is a monist account of explanation. Monism is the view that there is one single philosophical account capturing both causal and non-causal explanations. According to the CTE, both causal and non-causal explanations are explanatory by virtue of revealing counterfactual dependencies between the explanandum and the explanans.

Keywords:   scientific explanation, non-causal explanation, causal explanation, mathematical explanation, causation

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