Reference : Causes as Difference-Makers for Processes
Scientific journals : Article
Arts & humanities : Philosophy & ethics
Causes as Difference-Makers for Processes
Loew, Christian mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education (FLSHASE) > Identités, Politiques, Sociétés, Espaces (IPSE) >]
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
[en] Causation ; Difference-Making ; Causal Processes ; Transitivity
[en] It is natural to think of causes as difference-makers. What exact difference causes make, however, is an open question. In this paper, I argue that the right way of understanding difference-making is in terms of causal processes: causes make a difference to a causal process that leads to the effect. I will show that this way of understanding difference-making nicely captures the distinction between causing an outcome and helping determine how the outcome happens and, thus, explains why causation is not transitive. Moreover, the theory handles tricky cases that are problematic for competing accounts of difference-making.

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