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Imam Khomeini International University
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Jaegwon Kim (1934-2019) was a contemporary Korean-American philosopher whose research was on the philosophy of mind and metaphysics. This paper undertakes an evaluative examination and critique of his stance on the matter of mental causation. Kim's viewpoint on mental causation is based on reductive physicalism. This is how mental events become causally effective through the functional reduction of physical properties. He rejects physicalism's non-reductive reading. And, he believes, it involves the problem of over-determination. In his point of view, mental states can have causal power if their neuro-physical causes have such properties. Within the framework of the Canonical formulation of mental causation, the phenomenon of causal over-determination results in a diminished degree of causal efficacy associated with mental properties. Kim endeavors to expound his conceptualization of mental causation by elucidating notions such as the principle of causal exclusion, causation construed as production and closure principles. The author endeavors to evince the plausibility of mental causality. We argue that (1) supervening mental properties on physical properties makes mental properties to be an epiphenomenon. (2) The Causal Exclusion Argument inadequately preserves the presence of mental properties while simultaneously failing to provide a sufficient rejoinder to the concerns posited by the Generalization Argument. (3) The independency of mental properties from physical properties, and considering them as nomological, are incompatible with each other; and (4) reading causation as production contradicts physics' fundamental laws.
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Type of Study: Original Article | Subject: Philosophy
Received: 2022/08/16 | Accepted: 2022/10/28 | Published: 2023/06/7

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