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Local interactionism. The New Solution to the Problem of Mental Causation

15 June, 2018

Kuznetsov A.
First pub. in: Вопросы философии, №1 М.: 2016, С. 148-161.

The problem of mental causation is the problem of mind-body interaction. In his recent paper Anton Kuznetsov considers local interactionism which presents a new solution to this problem .


Local interactionism is a model of mental causation that justifies the causal efficacy of consciousness at the level of local events. The basis of this is the phenomenalistic ontology and refutation of the thesis of local supervenience. The paper consists of three parts. In the first part I try to show, in solidarity with the position of Jaegwon Kim, that the solution to the problem of mental causation in the traditional sense is not possible within naturalism, and the proposed solutions can’t answer the deep metaphysical questions. In the second, I argue that phenomenalistic approach to mental causation is the last option to solve the problem. In the third part my aim is to show that the only possible means to challenge this solution is conceptual rather than empirical and that the most difficult part of it is to find more concrete definitions of local and nonlocal events which don’t make the concept relative.

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