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Knowledge and Presuppositions

Mind 118 (470):241 - 294 (2009)

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  1. What the Metasemantics of "Know" is Not.Peter van Elswyk - forthcoming - Linguistics and Philosophy:1-14.
    Epistemic contextualism in the style of Lewis (1996) maintains that ascriptions of knowledge to a subject vary in truth with the alternatives that can be eliminated by the subject’s evidence in a context. Schaffer (2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2015), Schaffer and Knobe (2012), and Schaffer and Szabo ́ (2014) hold that the question under discussion or QUD always determines these alternatives in a context. This paper shows that the QUD does not perform such a role for "know" and uses this (...)
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  • Knowledge, Belief, and Egocentric Bias.Paul Dimmock - 2019 - Synthese 196 (8):3409-3432.
    Changes in conversationally salient error possibilities, and/or changes in stakes, appear to generate shifts in our judgments regarding the correct application of ‘know’. One prominent response to these shifts is to argue that they arise due to shifts in belief and do not pose a problem for traditional semantic or metaphysical accounts of knowledge. Such doxastic proposals face familiar difficulties with cases where knowledge is ascribed to subjects in different practical or conversational situations from the speaker. Jennifer Nagel has recently (...)
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  • Conversational Kinematics.Robin McKenna - 2017 - In Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Epistemic Contextualism. Routledge. pp. 321-331.
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  • Ignorance and Epistemic Contextualism.Michael Blome-Tillmann - forthcoming - In The Epistemic Dimensions of Ignorance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
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  • Gradability and Knowledge.Blome-Tillmann Michael - 2017 - In Jonathan Ichikawa (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Epistemic Contextualism. London: Routledge. pp. 348--357.
    Epistemic contextualism (‘EC’), the view that the truth-values of knowledge attributions may vary with the context of ascription, has a variety of different linguistic implementations. On one of the implementations most popular in the early days of EC, the predicate ‘knows p’ functions semantically similarly to gradable adjectives such as ‘flat’, ‘tall’, or ‘empty’. In recent work Jason Stanley and John Hawthorne have presented powerful arguments against such implementations of EC. In this article I briefly systematize the contextualist analogy to (...)
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  • Introduction.Baumann Peter - 2016 - In Epistemic Contextualism. A Defense. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 1-5.
    Introduction to and overview over my book "Epistemic Contextualism. A Defense" (OUP 2016).
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  • 'More Likely Than Not' - Knowledge First and the Role of Statistical Evidence in Courts of Law.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2017 - In Adam Carter, Emma Gordon & Benjamin Jarvis (eds.), Knowledge First - Approaches in Epistemology and Mind. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 278-292.
    The paper takes a closer look at the role of knowledge and evidence in legal theory. In particular, the paper examines a puzzle arising from the evidential standard Preponderance of the Evidence and its application in civil procedure. Legal scholars have argued since at least the 1940s that the rule of the Preponderance of the Evidence gives rise to a puzzle concerning the role of statistical evidence in judicial proceedings, sometimes referred to as the Problem of Bare Statistical Evidence. While (...)
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  • Contextualism in Epistemology.Robin McKenna - 2015 - Analysis 75 (3):489-503.
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  • Pluralism About Knowledge.Robin McKenna - 2017 - In Annalisa Coliva & Nikolaj Jang Lee Linding Pedersen (eds.), Epistemic Pluralism. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 171-198.
    In this paper I consider the prospects for pluralism about knowledge, that is, the view that there is a plurality of knowledge relations. After a brief overview of some views that entail a sort of pluralism about knowledge, I focus on a particular kind of knowledge pluralism I call standards pluralism. Put roughly, standards pluralism is the view that one never knows anything simpliciter. Rather, one knows by this-or-that epistemic standard. Because there is a plurality of epistemic standards, there is (...)
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  • Does Contextualism Hinge on A Methodological Dispute?Jie Gao, Mikkel Gerken & Stephen B. Ryan - 2017 - In Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Epistemic Contextualism. Routledge. pp. 81-93.
    In this entry, we provide an overview of some of the methodological debates surrounding contextualism and consider whether they are, in effect, based on an underlying methodological dispute. We consider three modes of motivation of epistemic contextualism including i) the method of cases, ii) the appeal to linguistic analogies and iii) the appeal to conceptual analogies and functional roles. We also consider the methodological debates about contextualism arising from experimental philosophy. We conclude that i) there is no distinctive methodological doctrine (...)
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  • In Conversation with the Skeptic: Contextualism and the Raising of Standards.Daniele Sgaravatti - 2013 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 3 (2):97-118.
    I begin by describing the solution to the problem of skepticism propounded by contextualists, which constitutes the background of the rest of the paper. I then address the question of what happens when a skeptic and a non-skeptic are confronted in dialogue to the standards in play for correct knowledge ascription, on the assumption that contextualism about knowledge is right. I argue against Keith DeRose that there are reasons, both intuitive and theoretical, to conclude that the standards will be raised (...)
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  • Knowledge, Pragmatics, and Error.Dirk Kindermann - 2016 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 93 (3):429-57.
    ‘Know-that’, like so many natural language expressions, exhibits patterns of use that provide evidence for its context-sensitivity. A popular family of views – call it prag- matic invariantism – attempts to explain the shifty patterns by appeal to a pragmatic thesis: while the semantic meaning of ‘know-that’ is stable across all contexts of use, sentences of the form ‘S knows [doesn’t know] that p’ can be used to communicate a pragmatic content that depends on the context of use. In this (...)
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  • Elusive Externalism.Bernhard Salow - 2019 - Mind 128 (510):397-427.
    Epistemologists have recently noted a tension between (i) denying access internalism, and (ii) maintaining that rational agents cannot be epistemically akratic, believing claims akin to ‘p, but I shouldn’t believe p’. I bring out the tension, and develop a new way to resolve it. The basic strategy is to say that access internalism is false, but that counterexamples to it are ‘elusive’ in a way that prevents rational agents from suspecting that they themselves are counterexamples to the internalist principles. I (...)
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  • Lewis on Iterated Knowledge.Bernhard Salow - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (6):1571-1590.
    The status of the knowledge iteration principles in the account provided by Lewis in “Elusive Knowledge” is disputed. By distinguishing carefully between what in the account describes the contribution of the attributor’s context and what describes the contribution of the subject’s situation, we can resolve this dispute in favour of Holliday’s claim that the iteration principles are rendered invalid. However, that is not the end of the story. For Lewis’s account still predicts that counterexamples to the negative iteration principle ) (...)
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  • Epistemic Comparativism: A Contextualist Semantics for Knowledge Ascriptions.Jonathan Schaffer & Zoltan Gendler Szabo - 2013 - Philosophical Studies (2):1-53.
    Knowledge ascriptions seem context sensitive. Yet it is widely thought that epistemic contextualism does not have a plausible semantic implementation. We aim to overcome this concern by articulating and defending an explicit contextualist semantics for ‘know,’ which integrates a fairly orthodox contextualist conception of knowledge as the elimination of the relevant alternatives, with a fairly orthodox “Amherst” semantics for A-quantification over a contextually variable domain of situations. Whatever problems epistemic contextualism might face, lack of an orthodox semantic implementation is not (...)
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  • Pragmatism and Semantic Particularism.Javier González de Prado Salas - 2016 - Disputatio 8 (43):219-232.
    Pragmatist views inspired by Peirce characterize the content of claims in terms of their practical consequences. The content of a claim is, on these views, determined by what actions are rationally recommended or supported by that claim. In this paper I examine the defeasibility of these relations of rational support. I will argue that such defeasibility introduces a particularist, occasion-sensitive dimension in pragmatist theories of content. More precisely, my conclusion will be that, in the sort of framework naturally derived from (...)
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  • Contextualism, Subject‐Sensitive Invariantism, and the Interaction of ‘Knowledge’‐Ascriptions with Modal and Temporal Operators.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2009 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 79 (2):315-331.
    Jason Stanley has argued recently that Epistemic Contextualism and Subject‐Sensitive Invariantism are explanatorily on a par with regard to certain data arising from modal and temporal embeddings of ‘knowledge’‐ascriptions. This paper argues against Stanley that EC has a clear advantage over SSI in the discussed field and introduces a new type of linguistic datum strongly suggesting the falsity of SSI.
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  • Three Things to Do With Knowledge Ascriptions.Tammo Lossau - forthcoming - Episteme:1-12.
    Any good theory of knowledge ascriptions should explain and predict our judgments about their felicity. I argue that any such explanation must take into account a distinction between three ways of using knowledge ascriptions: (a) to suggest acceptance of the embedded proposition, (b) to explain or predict a subject’s behavior or attitudes, or (c) to understand the relation of knowledge as such. The contextual effects on our judgments about felicity systematically differ between these three types of uses. Using such a (...)
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  • Defeasibility and Inferential Particularism.Javier González de Prado Salas - 2017 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 25 (1):80-98.
    In this paper I argue that defeasible inferences are occasion-sensitive: the inferential connections of a given claim depend on features of the circumstances surrounding the occasion of inference. More specifically, it is an occasion-sensitive matter which possible defeaters have to be considered explicitly by the premises of an inference and which possible defeaters may remain unconsidered, without making the inference enthymematic. As a result, a largely unexplored form of occasion-sensitivity arises in inferentialist theories of content that appeal to defeasible inferences.
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  • Epistemic Comparativism: A Contextualist Semantics for Knowledge Ascriptions.Jonathan Schaffer & Zoltán Gendler Szabó - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (2):491-543.
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  • Against Fallibilism.Dylan Dodd - 2011 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (4):665 - 685.
    In this paper I argue for a doctrine I call ?infallibilism?, which I stipulate to mean that If S knows that p, then the epistemic probability of p for S is 1. Some fallibilists will claim that this doctrine should be rejected because it leads to scepticism. Though it's not obvious that infallibilism does lead to scepticism, I argue that we should be willing to accept it even if it does. Infallibilism should be preferred because it has greater explanatory power (...)
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  • Inference and Action: Relating Beliefs to the World.Javier Gonzalez De Prado Salas - unknown
    The goal of this dissertation is to offer a practice-based account of intentionality. My aim is to examine what sort of practices agents have to engage in so as to count as talking and thinking about the way the world is – that is, what sort of practices count as representational. Representational practices answer to the way the world is: what is correct within such practices depends on the way things are, rather than on the attitudes of agents. An account (...)
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  • Relativism and Conservatism.Alexander Dinges - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-16.
    Relativism and contextualism have been suggested as candidate semantics for “knowledge” sentences. I argue that relativism faces a problem concerning the preservation of beliefs in memory. Contextualism has been argued to face a similar problem. I argue that contextualists, unlike relativists, can respond to the concern. The overall upshot is that contextualism is superior to relativism in at least one important respect.
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  • Knowledge and Implicatures.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2013 - Synthese 190 (18):4293-4319.
    In recent work on the semantics of ‘knowledge’-attributions, a variety of accounts have been proposed that aim to explain the data about speaker intuitions in familiar cases such as DeRose’s Bank Case or Cohen’s Airport Case by means of pragmatic mechanisms, notably Gricean implicatures. This paper argues that pragmatic explanations of the data regarding ‘knowledge’-attributions are unsuccessful and concludes that in explaining those data we have to resort to accounts that (a) take those data at their semantic face value (Epistemic (...)
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  • Could Knowledge-Talk Be Largely Non-Literal?Julianne Chung - 2018 - Episteme 15 (4):383-411.
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  • Possibilities Regained: Neo-Lewisian Contextualism and Ordinary Life.Mario Piazza & Nevia Dolcini - forthcoming - Synthese:1-20.
    According to David Lewis, the predicate ‘knows’ is context-sensitive in the sense that its truth conditions vary across conversational contexts, which stretch or compress the domain of error possibilities to be eliminated by the subject’s evidence. Our concern in this paper is to thematize, assess, and overcome within a neo-Lewisian contextualist project two important mismatches between our use of ‘know’ in ordinary life and the use of ‘know’ by ‘Lewisian’ ordinary speakers. The first mismatch is that Lewisian contextualism still overgenerates (...)
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  • Normative Scorekeeping.Robin McKenna - 2014 - Synthese 191 (3):607-625.
    Epistemic contextualists think that the truth-conditions of ‘knowledge’ ascriptions depend in part on the context in which they are uttered. But what features of context play a role in determining truth-conditions? The idea that the making salient of error possibilities is a central part of the story has often been attributed to contextualists, and a number of contextualists seem to endorse it (see Cohen (Philos Perspect, 13:57–89, 1999) and Hawthorne, (Knowledge and lotteries, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2004)). In this paper (...)
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  • Contextualism and the Knowledge Norms.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (1):89-100.
    Epistemic contextualism is widely believed to be incompatible with the recently popular view that knowledge is the norm of assertion, practical reasoning, or belief. I argue in this article that the problems arising for contextualism from the mentioned normative views are only apparent and can be resolved by acknowledging the fairly widespread phenomenon of non-obvious context-sensitivity (recently embraced by even some of contextualism's most ardent former critics). Building on recent insights about non-obvious context-sensitivity, the article outlines an independently attractive contextualist (...)
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  • The Argument From Skepticism for Contextualism.Jay Newhard - 2012 - Philosophia 40 (3):563-575.
    Epistemic contextualism was originally motivated and supported by the response it provides to skeptical paradox. Although there has been much discussion of the contextualist response to skeptical paradox, not much attention has been paid to the argument from skepticism for contextualism. Contextualists argue that contextualism accounts for the plausibility and apparent inconsistency of a set of paradoxical claims better than any classical invariantist theory. In this paper I focus on and carefully examine the argument from skepticism for contextualism. I argue (...)
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  • How to Do Things with Knowledge Ascriptions.Mikkel Gerken - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 90 (1):223-234.
    I discuss Lawlor’s Austinian account of knowledge ascriptions and argue that it is a brand of pragmatic encroachment. I then criticize the motivation for pragmatic encroachment theories that derives from assumptions about the functional role of knowledge ascriptions. I argue that this criticism also apply to contextualist followers of Craig. Finally, I suggest that the central lesson from reflection on the communicative functions of knowledge ascriptions is that they, upon reflection, motivate traditional invariantism.
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  • Anti-Intellectualism, Egocentrism and Bank Case Intuitions.Alexander Dinges - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (11):2841-2857.
    Salience-sensitivity is a form of anti-intellectualism that says the following: whether a true belief amounts to knowledge depends on which error-possibilities are salient to the believer. I will investigate whether salience-sensitivity can be motivated by appeal to bank case intuitions. I will suggest that so-called third-person bank cases threaten to sever the connection between bank case intuitions and salience-sensitivity. I will go on to argue that salience-sensitivists can overcome this worry if they appeal to egocentric bias, a general tendency to (...)
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  • Strange-but-True: A New Argument for Contextualism About ‘Know’.Paul Dimmock - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (8):2005-2015.
    A powerful objection to subject-sensitive invariantism concerns various ‘strange-but-true’ conditionals. One popular response to this objection is to argue that strange-but-true conditionals pose a problem for non-sceptical epistemological theories in general. In the present paper, it is argued that strange-but-true conditionals are not a problem for contextualism about ‘know’. This observation undercuts the proposed defence of SSI, and supplies a surprising new argument for contextualism.
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  • Interests Contextualism.Robin McKenna - 2011 - Philosophia 39 (4):741-750.
    In this paper I develop a version of contextualism that I call interests contextualism. Interests contextualism is the view that the truth-conditions of knowledge ascribing and denying sentences are partly determined by the ascriber’s interests and purposes. It therefore stands in opposition to the usual view on which the truth-conditions are partly determined by the ascriber’s conversational context. I give an argument against one particular implementation of the usual view, differentiate interests contextualism from other prominent versions of contextualism and argue (...)
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  • Stabilizing Knowledge.Michael Hannon - 2015 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 96 (1):116-139.
    If epistemic contextualism is correct, then knowledge attributions do not have stable truth-conditions across different contexts. John Hawthorne, Timothy Williamson, and Patrick Rysiew argue that this unstable picture of knowledge attributions undermines the role that knowledge reports play in storing, retrieving, and transmitting useful information. Contrary to this view, I argue that the truth-conditions of knowledge attributions are more stable than critics have claimed, and that contextualism is compatible with the role knowledge attributions play in storing, retrieving, and transmitting information (...)
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  • Hinge Commitments Vis-À-Vis the Transmission Problem.Ladislav Koreň - 2015 - Synthese 192 (8):2513-2534.
    This study provides a critical appraisal of Duncan Pritchard’s argument to the effect that ability to preserve certain eminently plausible transmission and/or closure principles for knowledge serves as a powerful adequacy test on alternative accounts of so-called Wittgensteinian certainties or hinge commitments. I argue that Pritchard fails to establish this claim—the transmission test does not favour his favourite conception over alternative conceptions premised on the idea that hinge commitments are not supportable via evidential-cognitive routes.
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  • Solving the Moorean Puzzle.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (2):493-514.
    This article addresses and resolves an epistemological puzzle that has attracted much attention in the recent literature—namely, the puzzle arising from Moorean anti-sceptical reasoning and the phenomenon of transmission failure. The paper argues that an appealing account of Moorean reasoning can be given by distinguishing carefully between two subtly different ways of thinking about justification and evidence. Once the respective distinctions are in place we have a simple and straightforward way to model both the Wrightean position of transmission failure and (...)
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  • Ignorance and Presuppositions.Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa - 2015 - Mind 124 (496):1207-1219.
    I develop a class of counterexamples to Blome-Tillmann’s ‘Presuppositional Epistemic Contextualism’. There are cases in which subjects are ignorant of key propositions that are inconsistent with the pragmatic presuppositions in conversational contexts in which they are discussed; in such contexts, PEC wrongly predicts the subjects to satisfy certain ‘knows’ attributions.
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