more from J.L. Mackie

Single Idea 8395

[catalogued under 26. Natural Theory / C. Causation / 9. General Causation / b. Nomological causation]

Full Idea

For general causal statements Mackie favours a nomological account, but for singular causal statements he argued for an analysis in terms of subjunctive conditionals.

Gist of Idea

Mackie has a nomological account of general causes, and a subjunctive conditional account of single ones


report of J.L. Mackie (Causes and Conditions [1965]) by Michael Tooley - Causation and Supervenience 5.2

Book Reference

'The Oxford Handbook of Metaphysics', ed/tr. Loux,M /Zimmerman,D [OUP 2005], p.407

A Reaction

These seem to be consistent, by explaining each by placing it within a broader account of reality. Personally I think Ducasse gives the best account of how you get from the particular to the general (via similarity and utility).