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  1. Trust Me, I’M a Scientist.Stefaan Blancke & Maarten Boudry - 2022 - Science & Education 31 (5):1141-1154.
    Modern democratic societies tend to appeal to the authority of science when dealing with important challenges and solving their problems. Nevertheless, distrust in science remains widespread among the public, and, as a result, scientific voices are often ignored or discarded in favour of other perspectives. Though superficially “democratic”, such a demotion of science in fact hinders democratic societies in effectively tackling their problems. Worryingly, some philosophers have provided ammunition to this distrust and scepticism of science. They either portray science as (...)
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  • Biblical and Theistic Arguments Against the Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism.Petteri Nieminen, Maarten Boudry, Esko Ryökäs & Anne-Mari Mustonen - 2017 - Zygon 52 (1):9-23.
    Alvin Plantinga's evolutionary argument against naturalism states that evolution cannot produce warranted beliefs. In contrast, according to Plantinga, Christian theism provides properly functioning cognitive faculties in an appropriate cognitive environment, in accordance with a design plan aimed at producing true beliefs. But does theism fulfill criteria I–III? Judging from the Bible, God employs deceit in his relations with humanity, rendering our cognitive functions unreliable. Moreover, there is no reason to suppose that God's purpose would be to produce true beliefs in (...)
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  • Old Wine in New Bottles: Evolutionary Debunking Arguments and the Benacerraf–Field Challenge.Michael Klenk - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (4):781-795.
    Evolutionary debunking arguments purport to show that robust moral realism, the metaethical view that there are non-natural and mind-independent moral properties and facts that we can know about, is incompatible with evolutionary explanations of morality. One of the most prominent evolutionary debunking arguments is advanced by Sharon Street, who argues that if moral realism were true, then objective moral knowledge is unlikely because realist moral properties are evolutionary irrelevant and moral beliefs about those properties would not be selected for. However, (...)
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  • Hoffman's Conscious Realism: A Critical Review.Leslie Allan - manuscript
    Donald Hoffman proposed a bold theory—that objects do not exist independently of us perceiving them and that all that really exists is conscious agents. In this critical review, Leslie Allan examines the three core components of Hoffman's new idealism. He proposes solutions to linguistic absurdities suffered by Hoffman's theory before considering its most serious problems. These include oversimplifications of evolutionary theory, self-refutation, heuristic sterility and dependence on scientific realism.
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  • Critical Remarks on the Cognitive Science of Religion.Konrad Szocik - 2020 - Zygon 55 (1):157-184.
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  • Did Natural Selection Select for True Religious Beliefs?Hans van Eyghen & Christopher T. Bennett - 2022 - Religious Studies 58 (1):113-137.
    Although it is commonly accepted that Darwinian evolution could select for true common-sense beliefs, it is altogether less certain that the same can be said for other classes of beliefs, such as moral or religious beliefs. This issue takes centre stage in debates concerning evolutionary debunking arguments against religious beliefs, where the rationality of beliefs is often dependent upon their production by an evolved faculty that is sensitive to truth. In this article, we consider whether evolution selected for true religious (...)
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  • Can Moral Realists Deflect Defeat Due to Evolutionary Explanations of Morality?Michael Klenk - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (S1):227-248.
    I address Andrew Moon's recent discussion (2016, this journal) of the question whether third-factor accounts are valid responses to debunking arguments against moral realism. Moon argues that third-factor responses are valid under certain conditions but leaves open whether moral realists can use his interpretation of the third-factor response to defuse the evolutionary debunking challenge. I rebut Moon's claim and answer his question. Moon's third-factor reply is valid only if we accept externalism about epistemic defeaters. However, even if we do, I (...)
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  • Is Epistemic Anxiety an Intellectual Virtue?Frank Cabrera - 2021 - Synthese (5-6):1-25.
    In this paper, I discuss the ways in which epistemic anxiety promotes well-being, specifically by examining the positive contributions that feelings of epistemic anxiety make toward intellectually virtuous inquiry. While the prospects for connecting the concept of epistemic anxiety to the two most prominent accounts of intellectual virtue, i.e., “virtue-reliabilism” and “virtue-responsibilism”, are promising, I primarily focus on whether the capacity for epistemic anxiety counts as an intellectual virtue in the reliabilist sense. As I argue, there is a close yet (...)
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  • Evolution and Epistemic Justification.Michael Vlerick & Alex Broadbent - 2015 - Dialectica 69 (2):185-203.
    According to the evolutionary sceptic, the fact that our cognitive faculties evolved radically undermines their reliability. A number of evolutionary epistemologists have sought to refute this kind of scepticism. This paper accepts the success of these attempts, yet argues that refuting the evolutionary sceptic is not enough to put any particular domain of beliefs – notably scientific beliefs, which include belief in Darwinian evolution – on a firm footing. The paper thus sets out to contribute to this positive justificatory project, (...)
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  • Evolutionary Debunking Arguments and the Moral Niche.Eleonora Severini - 2016 - Philosophia 44 (3):865-875.
    The so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments are arguments that appeal to the evolutionary genealogy of our beliefs to undermine their justification. When applied to morality, such arguments are intended to undermine moral realism. In this paper I will discuss Andreas Mogensen’s recent effort to secure moral realism against EDAs. Mogensen attempts to undermine the challenge provided by EDAs in metaethics through the distinction between proximate and ultimate causes in biology. The problem with this move is that the proximate/ultimate distinction is misconceived. (...)
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  • Plantinga Redux: Is the Scientific Realist Committed to the Rejection of Naturalism?Abraham Graber & Luke Golemon - 2020 - Sophia 59 (3):395-412.
    While Plantinga has famously argued that acceptance of neo-Darwinian theory commits one to the rejection of naturalism, Plantinga’s argument is vulnerable to an objection developed by Evan Fales. Not only does Fales’ objection undermine Plantinga’s original argument, it establishes a general challenge which any attempt to revitalize Plantinga’s argument must overcome. After briefly laying out the contours of this challenge, we attempt to meet it by arguing that because a purely naturalistic account of our etiology cannot explain the correlation between (...)
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  • Truth and Consequences: When Is It Rational to Accept Falsehoods?Taner Edis & Maarten Boudry - 2019 - Journal of Cognition and Culture 19 (1-2):147-169.
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  • Review of The Social Psychology of Morality. [REVIEW]Michael Klenk - 2016 - Metapsychology Online 20 (48):1-8.
    If you put chimpanzees from different communities together you can expect mayhem - they are not keen on treating each other nicely. There is closely related species of apes, however, whose members have countless encounters with unrelated specimen on a daily basis and yet almost all get through the day in one piece - that species is us, homo sapiens. But what makes us get along, most of the time? Morality as such is, perhaps surprisingly, not a mainstream research topic (...)
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  • Darwinism in Metaethics: What If the Universal Acid Cannot Be Contained?Eleonora Severini & Fabio Sterpetti - 2017 - History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences 39 (3):1-25.
    The aim of this article is to explore the impact of Darwinism in metaethics and dispel some of the confusion surrounding it. While the prospects for a Darwinian metaethics appear to be improving, some underlying epistemological issues remain unclear. We will focus on the so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments (EDAs) which, when applied in metaethics, are defined as arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of moral beliefs so as to undermine their epistemic justification. The point is that an epistemic disanalogy (...)
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  • The end of science? On human cognitive limitations and how to overcome them.Maarten Boudry, Michael Vlerick & Taner Edis - 2020 - Biology and Philosophy 35 (1):1-16.
    What, if any, are the limits of human understanding? Epistemic pessimists, sobered by our humble evolutionary origins, have argued that some parts of the universe will forever remain beyond our ken. But what exactly does it mean to say that humans are ‘cognitively closed’ to some parts of the world, or that some problems will forever remain ‘mysteries’? In this paper we develop a richer conceptual toolbox for thinking about different forms and varieties of cognitive limitation, which are often conflated (...)
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  • A Cognitive Perspective on Scientific Realism.Michael Vlerick - 2019 - Philosophical Psychology 32 (8):1157-1178.
    The debate about scientific realism is concerned with the relation between our scientific theories and the world. Scientific realists argue that our best theories or components of those theories correspond to the world. Anti-realists deny such a correspondence. Traditionally, this central issue in the philosophy of science has been approached by focusing on the theories themselves (e.g., by looking at theory change or the underlying experimental context). I propose a relatively unexplored way to approach this old debate. In addition to (...)
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