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Of Miracles and Interventions

Glynn, Luke (2013) Of Miracles and Interventions. Erkenntnis.


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In Making Things Happen, James Woodward influentially combines a causal modeling analysis of actual causation with an INTERVENTIONIST semantics for the counterfactuals encoded in causal models. This leads to circularities, since interventions are defined in terms of both actual causation and interventionist counterfactuals. Circularity can be avoided by instead combining a causal modeling
analysis with a semantics along the lines of that given by David Lewis, on which counterfactuals are to be evaluated with respect to worlds in which their antecedents are realized by MIRACLES. I argue, pace Woodward, that causal modeling analyses perform just as well when combined with the Lewisian semantics as when combined with the interventionist semantics. Reductivity therefore remains a reasonable hope.

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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Keywords: Causation, Counterfactuals, Interventionism, Causal Models
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Depositing User: Dr. Luke Fenton-Glynn
Date Deposited: 05 May 2013 04:44
Last Modified: 05 May 2013 04:44
Item ID: 9722
Journal or Publication Title: Erkenntnis
Publisher: Springer
Official URL:
DOI or Unique Handle:
Subjects: General Issues > Causation
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Date: 2013

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