Why There Isn't Inter-level Causation in Mechanisms

Felipe Romero*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The experimental interventions that provide evidence of causal relations are notably similar to those that provide evidence of constitutive relevance relations. In the first two sections, I show that this similarity creates a tension: there is an inconsistent triad between (1) Woodward’s popular interventionist theory of causation, (2) Craver’s mutual manipulability account of constitutive relevance in mechanisms, and a variety of arguments for (3) the incoherence of inter-level causation. I argue for an interpretation of the views in which the tension is merely apparent. I propose to explain inter-level relations without inter-level causation by appealing to the notion of fat-handed interventions, and an argument against inter-level causation which dissolves the problem.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3731–3755
Number of pages25
JournalSynthese
Volume192
Issue number11
Early online date28-Mar-2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • FACE
  • EXPLANATION
  • ACCOUNT
  • BRAIN

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