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The Journal of Philosophy

Volume 117, Issue 6, June 2020

Lei Zhong
Pages 293-314

Intervention, Fixation, and Supervenient Causation

A growing number of philosophers are bringing interventionism into the field of supervenient causation. Many argue that interventionist supervenient causation is exempted from the fixability condition. However, this approach looks ad hoc, inconsistent with the general interventionist requirement on fixation. Moreover, it leads to false judgments about the causal efficacy of supervenient/subvenient properties. This article aims to develop a novel interventionist account of supervenient causation that respects the fixability requirement. The treatment of intervention and fixation that I propose can accommodate some theoretical constraints on causation and deliver correct causal verdicts in classic examples. It is also worth noting that this interventionist account offers a promising defense of mental causation without postulating mental-physical overdetermination.

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