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Mental Causation and Ontology$
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S. C. Gibb, E. J. Lowe, and R. D. Ingthorsson

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199603770

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199603770.001.0001

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Mental Causation and Double Prevention

Mental Causation and Double Prevention

Chapter:
(p.193) 8 Mental Causation and Double Prevention
Source:
Mental Causation and Ontology
Author(s):

S. C. Gibb

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199603770.003.0009

This paper assumes a powers theory of causation. Given this theory of causation, a double preventer is not a cause of the event that it prevents from being prevented. However, the double preventer still plays a crucial role in accounting for the event’s occurrence, as it is the double preventer that permits the event to be caused. If mental events are double preventers, and a powers theory of causation is accepted, this provides a way of reconciling the premises of the argument from causal overdetermination with dualism. According to this dualist account of psychophysical causation, a mental event permits a bodily movement to take place by permitting a neurological event to cause the bodily movement. It permits this causal relation by preventing a mental event that would have prevented it.

Keywords:   powers, double prevention, causation, mental causation, dualism, permitting

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