|Causality, Identity and Supervenience in the Mind-Body Problem|
|Source: Midwest Studies in Philosophy (Vol IV) - Metaphysics|
|Paper - Abstract|
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Philosophers Index Abstract
The concept of "supervenience1" is used to resolve three problems about causal relations involving mental events. These problems are:-
(1) the problem of pre-emption,
(2) the problem of spurious overdetermination, and
(3) the problem of spurious partial cause.
The relation of supervenience2 between families of properties or events is explained, and causal connections among supervenient events are explained in terms of the causal connections between the events on which they supervene3. The thesis that mental events are supervenient upon physical events is formulated, and defended, in part on the model of the global supervenience4 of macro-properties and processes on their micro-counterparts. Similarities and differences between the supervenience5 thesis concerning the mental and classical epiphenomenalism are noted and discussed.
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