PhilSci Archive

Singular Causation without Dispositions

García-Encinas, María José (2011) Singular Causation without Dispositions. THEORIA. An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science, 26 (1). pp. 35-50. ISSN 2171-679X

[img]
Preview
PDF
928-3407-1-PB.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

Download (267kB)

Abstract

Is singular causation best understood within a dispositionalist framework? Although a positive answer has not yet been wholly developed, different philosophers have made some positive contributions suggesting that it is. Against these suggestions, I claim that any possible account of singular causation in terms of real, irreducible, dispositions conveys unsolvable flaws in its very metaphysical foundations.

First, I present two main constituents that I take to be necessary for any possible dispositional account of singular causation: (i) the possibility of causation without laws, which is a necessary condition for causal singularism, and (ii) a conception of dispositions as real, irreducible entities or properties. This results in a minimal dispositionalist view of singular causation. Second, I argue that, even if minimal, this view already has to face up to serious difficulties: (i) an ontological problem concerning the individuating conditions for dispositions in causal contexts, (ii) an instance of infinite regress, (iii) the loss of the relational character of causation and, as a corollary, (iv) the loss of the asymmetry of causation. Third, I argue that dispositional and dispositionalism that is becoming commonplace but which, I claim, is in fact a false choice. Finally, I sketch a possible picture of causality without laws and without disposition.


Export/Citation: EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
Social Networking:
Share |

Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
García-Encinas, María Joséencinas@ugr.es
Additional Information: ISSN: 0495-4548 (print)
Keywords: Causation; Dispositions; Singularism; Humeanism; Relation; Modality
Depositing User: Users 15304 not found.
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2014 23:29
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2014 23:29
Item ID: 10289
Journal or Publication Title: THEORIA. An International Journal for Theory, History and Foundations of Science
Publisher: Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea / Universidad del País Vasco
Official URL: http://www.ehu.es/ojs/index.php/THEORIA/article/vi...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1387/theoria.928
Date: February 2011
Page Range: pp. 35-50
Volume: 26
Number: 1
ISSN: 2171-679X
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/10289

Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Altmetric.com

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item