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An Analysis of Probabilistic Causation in Dichotomous Structures

Frederick S. Ellett Jr. and David P. Ericson
Synthese
Vol. 67, No. 2, Causation and Scientific Inference and Related Matters (May, 1986), pp. 175-193
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20116267
Page Count: 19
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An Analysis of Probabilistic Causation in Dichotomous Structures
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Abstract

During the past decades several philosophers of science and social scientists have been interested in the problems of causation. Recently attention has been given to probabilistic causation in dichotomous causal systems. The paper uses the basic features of probabilistic causation to argue that the causal modeling approaches developed by such researchers as Blalock (1964) and Duncan (1975) can provide, when an additional assumption is added, adequate qualitative measures of one variableś causal influence upon another. Finally, some of the difficulties and issues involved in developing adequate quantitative measures are discussed, and it is concluded that the causal modeling measures cannot provide adequate quantitative measures.

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