Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

What we imagine versus how we imagine, and a problem for explaining counterfactual thoughts with causal ones

  • Winston Chang and Patricia Herrmann (a1)

Causal and counterfactual thoughts are bound together in Byrne's theory of human imagination. We think there are two issues in her theory that deserve clarification. First, Byrne describes which counterfactual possibilities we think of, but she leaves unexplained the mechanisms by which we generate these possibilities. Second, her exploration of “strong causes” and enablers gives two different predictions of which counterfactuals we think of in causal scenarios. On one account, we think of the counterfactuals which we have control over. On the other, which counterfactuals we think of depends on whether something is a strong cause or an enabler. Although these two accounts sometimes give the same predictions, we present cases in which they differ, and we would like to see Byrne's theory provide a way of reconciling these differences.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 6
Total number of PDF views: 14 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 57 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 26th September 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.