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Towards a causal realist theory of causal understanding

White, Peter Anthony 1999. Towards a causal realist theory of causal understanding. American Journal of Psychology 112 (4) , pp. 605-642.

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Within a limited domain, humans can perceive causal relations directly. The term causal realism is used to denote this psychological hypothesis. The domain of causal realism is in actions upon objects and haptic perception of the effects of those actions: When we act upon an object we cannot be mistaken about the fact that we are acting upon it and perceive the causal relation directly through mechanoreceptors. Experiences of actions upon objects give rise to causal knowledge that can be used in the interpretation of perceptual input. Phenomenal causality, the occurrence of causal impressions in visual perception, is a product of the application of acquired causal knowledge in the automatic perceptual interpretation of appropriate stimuli. Causal realism could constitute the foundation on which all causal perception, judgment, inference, attribution, and knowledge develop.

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
ISSN: 0002-9556
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:09

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