Causal Reasoning in Physics

2015.06.12 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Mathias Frisch, Causal Reasoning in Physics, Cambridge University Press, 2014, 256pp., $95.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781107031494.
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2015.06.12 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Mathias Frisch, Causal Reasoning in Physics, Cambridge University Press, 2014, 256pp., $95.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781107031494. Reviewed by Thomas Blanchard, Illinois Wesleyan University Most contemporary philosophers of physics agree with Russell's (1913) view that causal notions are absent from or at least play no essential role in fundamental physics. In this book Mathias Frisch launches an incisive attack on the neo-Russellian consensus. Frisch argues that far from being 'a relic of a bygone era' (Russell's words), causal notions play a legitimate and in fact indispensable role in our best physical theories of the world. The bulk of the book is devoted to a careful examination and criticism of the various arguments that have been offered for the claim that causation has little or no role to play in physics. One line of argument relies on the thought that causal relations essentially involve a small number of. . .

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