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The Ontology of MindEvents, Processes, and States$
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Helen Steward

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780198250647

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198250647.001.0001

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Efficacy, Causing, and Relevance

Efficacy, Causing, and Relevance

Chapter:
(p.168) 6 Efficacy, Causing, and Relevance
Source:
The Ontology of Mind
Author(s):

Helen Steward

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198250647.003.0007

In Chapter 5, it was argued that a proper appreciation of the important differences between singular and sentential explanations is essential if we are to understand properly the ontological and metaphysical implications of our causal talk. Towards the end of that chapter, a view called the Davidsonian view was outlined, which attempted to account for these differences by drawing on the distinction between two relations — the relation of causation and that of causal explanation. It was suggested that this answer seemed to leave unexplicated the connection between the relation of causal explanation — a relation whose holding, at least on one fairly plausible view, is dependent upon the tendency of human beings to find one fact, or set of facts, to be useful in achieving a certain kind of understanding of another — and ‘real metaphysical causality in the world’. This chapter, attempts to provide the outline of an account which might help us to understand this relation.

Keywords:   causation, causal explanation, process explanation, program explanation

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