© 2003

Dependencies, Connections, and Other Relations

A Theory of Mental Causation


Part of the Philosophical Studies Series book series (PSSP, volume 93)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxxiii
  2. Ontology

    1. Front Matter
      Pages xxxv-xxxv
    2. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 1-13
    3. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 15-23
    4. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 25-40
  3. Causality

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 41-42
    2. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 43-51
    3. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 53-71
    4. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 73-86
    5. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 87-100
    6. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 101-113
    7. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 115-123
    8. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 125-136
    9. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 137-146
    10. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 147-154
    11. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 155-168
    12. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 169-179
  4. Mind

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 181-182
    2. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 183-198
    3. Wim De Muijnck
      Pages 199-210

About this book


The text before you is a study ofthe problematic issue ofmental causation: causation by minds. On hearing the expression 'mental causation,' you may at first think ofsomething like bending spoons by 'psychic' powers. But no, we are dealing here with something much more puzzling: doing things for reasons, i. e. , what we call agency. Psychic spoon-bending would be a fairly straightforward issue. You just exert some psychic force and bend a spoon, just like you might bend it by hand, i. e. , by physical force. The only trouble here is that psychic forces may not be in fact available '. But now you fetch an umbrella because you expect that it will rain. How does that work? Some­ how, it seems, you let an expectation move your limbs. But aren't your limbs already moved by nerve impulses and muscle contractions? And are expecta­ tions the proper kind ofitems to move things around? Mental causation is an issue that is at the heart ofthe mind-body problem, the problem of making it clear how minded creatures such as we are possi­ ble, and what our mindedness consists in. Unlike psychic spoon-bending, mental causation happens every day. At least, pretty much of what we take for granted about ourselves can only be right when mental causation really happens.


15th century concept corpus history of literature issue metaphysics mind natural law ontology philosophy philosophy of mind physics reason subject will

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Tilburg and Nijmegen UniversityThe Netherlands

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Dependencies, Connections, and Other Relations
  • Book Subtitle A Theory of Mental Causation
  • Authors Wim de Muijnck
  • Series Title Philosophical Studies Series
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2003
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-4020-1391-1
  • Softcover ISBN 978-90-481-6326-7
  • eBook ISBN 978-94-017-0121-1
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XXXVI, 288
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Philosophy of Mind
    Philosophy of Science
  • Buy this book on publisher's site