Seminar Series in Analytic Philosophy, Session 11

Sam Baron

University of Western Australia

Grounding vs. Causation

6 December 2019, 16:00

Faculdade de Letras de Lisboa

Sala Mattos Romão (Departamento de Filosofia)

Abstract: What is the difference between grounding and causation? A number of philosophers have advocated the temporal criterion: causation occurs across time, grounding does not. The temporal criterion has been challenged on two fronts. First, directly, by offering examples of grounding that occur across time and, second, indirectly, through the development of metaphysical models that make use of transtemporal grounding. In light of these challenges, a new temporal criterion is proposed. The difference between grounding and causation involves the use that they make of time: causation requires time to connect spatially distant relata, grounding does not. This difference speaks to an important aspect of the job description of grounding: namely, that it can construct the world over space. (This work is based on ‘Grounding at a Distance’, with Kristie Miller and Jonathan Tallant.)