A Cartan-Eilenberg approach to homotopical algebra
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In this paper we propose an approach to homotopical algebra where the basic ingredient is a category with two classes of distinguished morphisms: strong and weak equivalences. These data determine the cofibrant objects by an extension property analogous to the classical lifting property of projective modules. We define a Cartan-Eilenberg category as a category with strong and weak equivalences such that there is an equivalence of categories between its localisation with respect to weak equivalences and the relative localisation of the subcategory of cofibrant objets with respect to strong equivalences. This equivalence of categories allows us to extend the classical theory of derived additive functors to this non additive setting. The main examples include Quillen model categories and categories of functors defined on a category endowed with a cotriple (comonad) and taking values on a category of complexes of an abelian category. In the latter case there are examples in which the class of strong equivalences is not determined by a homotopy relation. Among other applications of our theory, we establish a very general acyclic models theorem.