Making a Difference: Essays on the Philosophy of Causation

ISBN : 9780198746911

Helen Beebee; Christopher Hitchcock
384 ページ
156 x 234 mm

Making a Difference presents fifteen original essays on causation and counterfactuals by an international team of experts. Collectively, they represent the state of the art on these topics. The essays in this volume are inspired by the life and work of Peter Menzies, who made a difference in the lives of students, colleagues, and friends. Topics covered include: the semantics of counterfactuals, agency theories of causation, the context-sensitivity of causal claims, structural equation models, mechanisms, mental causation, causal exclusion argument, free will, and the consequence argument.


1 Helen Beebee, Christopher Hitchcock and Huw Price: Introduction
2 Daniel Nolan: Causal Counterfactuals and Impossible Worlds
3 Rachael Briggs: Two Interpretations of the Ramsey Test
4 Cei Maslen: Pragmatic Explanations of the Proportionality Constraint on Causation
5 Huw Price: Causation, Intervention, and Agency: Woodward on Menzies and Price
6 David Braddon-Mitchell: The Glue of the Universe
7 Christopher Hitchcock: Actual Causation: What's the Use?
8 Nancy Cartwright: Can Structural Equations Explain How Mechanisms Explain?
9 Peter Menzies: The Problem of Counterfactual Isomorphs
10 Thomas Blanchard and Jonathan Schaffer: Cause without Default
11 Brad Weslake: Difference-making, Closure and Exclusion
12 Philip Pettit: The Program Model, Difference-makers, and the Exclusion Problem
13 James Woodward: Intervening in the Exclusion Argument
14 Christian List and Peter Menzies: My Brain Made Me Do It: The Exclusion Argument Against Free Will, and What's Wrong With It
15 Helen Beebee: Epiphenomenalism for Functionalists
16 Peter Menzies: The Consequence Argument Disarmed: an Interventionist Perspective


Helen Beebee is Samuel Hall Professor of Philosophy at the University of Manchester. Her research focuses on issues surrounding Humeanism and its rivals, especially in connection with causation, laws of nature and freedom of the will. She is the author of Hume on Causation (Routledge 2006) and Free Will: An Introduction (Palgrave 2013), and co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of Causation (OUP 2009), with Christopher Hitchcock and Peter Menzies, as well as volumes on natural kinds and truthmakers. Here work has appeared in journals such as The Journal of Philosophy, Mind, Philosophical Review and Nous.; Christopher Hitchcock is the J. O. and Juliette Koepfli Professor of Philosophy at the California Institute of Technology. He has published widely on causation, explanation, and formal epistemology, as well as other topics in the philosophy of science. His work has appeared in journals such as the Journal of Philosophy, the Philosophical Review, Nous, Philosophy of Science, and the British Journal for the Philosophy of Science. He has also published in the fields of computer science, law, linguistics, and psychology. Three of his papers have been reprinted in the Philosopher's Annual. He is the editor of Contemporary Debates in the Philosophy of Science (Wiley Blackwell 2004); The Oxford Handbook of Causation (Oxford 2009), with Helen Beebee and Peter Menzies; and The Oxford Handbook of Probability and Philosophy (Oxford 2016), with Alan Hajek.; Huw Price FBA FAHA is Bertrand Russell Professor of Philosophy and Director of the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence at the University of Cambridge. He is a a Fellow of Trinity College. His publications include Facts and the Function of Truth (Blackwell, 1988), Time's Arrow and Archimedes' Point (OUP, 1996), and Naturalism Without Mirrors (OUP, 2011). He is also co-editor (with Richard Corry) of Causation, Physics, and the Constitution of Reality (OUP, 2007) and co-author (with Simon Blackburn, Robert Brandom, Paul Horwich and Michael Williams) of Expressivism, Pragmatism and Representationalism (CUP, 2013).