Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology

Volume 25, Issue 3, 2021

Dairon Alfonso Rodríguez RamírezOrcid-ID, Jorge Francisco Maldonado SerranoOrcid-ID
Pages 479-492

Causal Cognition and Skillful Tool Use

An epistemological account of tool use is fundamental for a better comprehension of technical objects within the philosophy of technology. In this paper, we put forward an answer to the question “What is the role of causal cognition in skillful tool use?” We argue that an interventionist account of causal representation enables us to see how cases of skillful tool use presuppose the acquisition of representations of the causal relationships between direct interventions on a tool and the desired effects. This approach allows us to explain two of the main features of skillful tool use: systematicity and generality.

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