Is race a cause?

Publication Year:
2012
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Repository URL:
http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/9402
Author(s):
Marcellesi, Alexandre
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conference paper description
Advocates of the counterfactual approach to causal inference argue that race isn’t a cause. I object that their argument is invalid and that its key premise is unwarranted. I also criticize the criterion, which I call ‘Holland’s rule’, the counterfactual approach relies on to distinguish causes from non-causes. Finally, I argue that racial discrimination cannot be causally explained unless one assumes race to be a cause. I conclude that the view that race is not a cause lacks support and that there are good reasons to adopt the opposite view that race is a cause.