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Analysis and Defense of Sole Singular Causal Claims

Ennis, Robert H (2012) Analysis and Defense of Sole Singular Causal Claims. In: [2012] Philosophy of Science Assoc. 23rd Biennial Mtg (San Diego, CA) > PSA 2012 Contributed Papers.

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    Abstract

    To claim that x was the cause of y (or x caused y) is 1) to assume that x was one of a number of things, each of which together with the others was sufficient to have brought about y, and 2) to deem x responsible for the occurrence of y. A best-explanation argument, including application to cases, is offered in defense of this analysis, which holds that claiming that something is the cause is, in part, a speech act (deeming x to be responsible) that reflects the cause selector’s values or perspectives. No proposed alternative explanation accounts for all the cases with which I am familiar, but this analysis does account for them. Thus the analysis and the defense of sole singular causal claims call for more than empirical evidence, though of course evidence is very important.


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    Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
    Keywords: the cause, responsibility ascription, speech act, everyday sense, values, perspectives, deeming,target of interference, necessary condition, sufficient condition, causal nexus,independent variable
    Subjects: General Issues > History of Philosophy of Science
    Conferences and Volumes: [2012] Philosophy of Science Assoc. 23rd Biennial Mtg (San Diego, CA) > PSA 2012 Contributed Papers
    Depositing User: Dr. Robert H Ennis
    Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2012 18:00
    Last Modified: 18 Dec 2012 13:21
    Item ID: 9446
    URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9446

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