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Article Title

Inevitability in History

Abstract

Historians sometimes say that one event or set of events made another event inevitable. This paper proposes an analysis of the concept of inevitability that is employed in such claims. To say that one event E made another event F inevitable is to say that: (1) E and F occurred, and in that temporal order, and (2) After E, and because of E, no action within the power of any living person or persons who desired F not to occur would have been followed by the nonoccurrence of F. One of the corollaries of this analysis is that anyone who asserts an inevitability statement is thereby committed to a true generalization to the effect that conditions like E cause conditions like F

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Metaphysics Commons

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