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Multiple Realization, Reduction and Mental Properties

Abstract : The paper tries to remove some obstacles standing in the way of considering mental properties as both genuine natural kinds and causally efficacious rather than epiphenomena. As the case of temperature shows, it isn't justified to conclude from a property's being multiply realizable to its being irreducible. Yet Kim's (1992) argument to the effect that if a property is multiply realizable with a heterogeneous reduction base then it can't be a natural kind and possesses only derivative "epiphenomenal" causal efficacy isn't conclusive either. The fact that temperature is, but jade is not, a natural kind cannot be established by comparing the heterogeneity of their respective reduction bases, but rather by the fact that the former is and the latter isn't embedded in laws of nature.
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https://jeannicod.ccsd.cnrs.fr/ijn_00000017
Contributor : Max Kistler <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, June 12, 2002 - 2:45:58 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, September 22, 2020 - 3:52:35 AM

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Max Kistler. Multiple Realization, Reduction and Mental Properties. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science, Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 1999, 13 (2), pp.135-149. ⟨ijn_00000017⟩

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