Mental Causation and the Metaphysics of Causation

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    The paper argues for four claims: (1) The problem of mental causation and the argument for its solution in terms of the identity of mental with physical causes are independent of the theory of causation one favours. (2) If one considers our experience of agency as described by folk psychology to be veridical, one is committed to an anti-Humean metaphysics of causation in terms of powers that establish necessary connections. The same goes for functional properties in general. (3) A metaphysics of causation in terms of powers is compatible with physics. (4) If combined with the argument for mental causes being identical with physical causes, that metaphysics leads to a conservative reductionism.