Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

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Bigelow, John
 
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Causes I 267
Cause/Bigelow/Pargetter: Thesis: a cause is neither sufficient nor necessary for an effect.
Reason: there is a backup system that could have produced the same effect.
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I 268
If the updated system failed. E.g. you could have also eaten another slice of bread. Different food intake can have exactly the same effect.
Blur/Imperfection/Bigelow/Pargetter: it is a characteristic feature of living systems. Nevertheless, this is not an intrinsic feature.
Cause/Lewis/Bigelow/Pargetter: Lewis allows that a cause is not a necessary condition for the effect. Nevertheless, he explains causation by necessity. Namely, through chains of necessary conditions. (1973b, 1986d, 1979).
Cause/Mackie/Bigelow/Pargetter: he arrives at similar results like Lewis, but with strict conditionals. (> Cause/Mackie)
Cause/INUS/Mackie: (Mackie 1965) Thesis: not a sufficient but necessary part of an unnecessary but sufficient condition.
Cause/Lewis/Mackie/Bigelow/Pargetter: both come from a chain of necessary conditions. They differ in how the links of the chain are to be connected.
Lewis: through contrafactual conditioning
Mackie: through strict conditionals. Their antecedents can be so complex that we cannot specify them in practice.
Backup system/Bigelow/Pargetter: (see above) would cause a contrafactual conditional to fail. Nevertheless, Lewis records the cause as a cause because it contributes to the chain.
Mackie: dito, because the deviant cause is part of a sufficient condition.
BigelowVsLewis/BigelowVsMackie: both theories have disadvantages.

Big I
J. Bigelow, R. Pargetter
Science and Necessity Cambridge 1990


> Counter arguments against Bigelow
> Counter arguments in relation to Causes



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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2017-03-25