Many philosophers have pointed out that ‘because’-sentences exhibit an asymmetrical behaviour: If one fact obtains because another fact obtains, then the latter fact cannot also obtain because the former does.

The asymmetry of ‘because’ plays an important role for different philosophical debates in which central theses are formulated in terms of the sentential connective ‘because’. One famous example is Socrates’ argument against Euthyphro’s account of piety: at a central juncture of the argument, Euthyphro has to make a choice between holding either that the pious is pious because it is godbeloved, or that the pious is godbeloved because it is pious. Due to the asymmetry of ‘because’, he cannot have it both ways, and the choice he makes undermines his proposal about piety – or so the argument goes.

In the talk, I will try to deepen our understanding of that asymmetry and also discuss alleged counterexamples to it.