Accounting for Epistemic Relevance: A New Problem for the Causal Theory
by Dorothea Debus
In their paper "Remembering,"
first published in the Philosophical Review in 1966, Martin
and Deutscher develop what has since come to be known as the Causal
Theory of Memory. The core
claim of the Causal Theory of Memory (as formulated by Martin and Deutscher)
runs as follows:
If someone remembers something,
whether it be "public," such as a car accident, or "private," such as
an itch, then the following criteria must be fulfilled:
1. Within certain limits
of accuracy he represents that past thing.
2. I f the thing was
"public," then he observed what he now represents. If the thing
was "private," then it was his.
3. His past experience
of the thing was operative in producing a state or successive states
in him finally operative in producing his representation. These
three statements express the condition which we consider to be separately
necessary and jointly sufficient, if an event is to be an instance