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  1. Prejudice in Testimonial Justification: A Hinge Account.Anna Boncompagni - 2021 - Episteme 1 (Early view).
    Although research on epistemic injustice has focused on the effects of prejudice in epistemic exchanges, the account of prejudice that emerges in Fricker’s (2007) view is not completely clear. In particular, I claim that the epistemic role of prejudice in the structure of testimonial justification is still in need of a satisfactory explanation. What special epistemic power does prejudice exercise that prevents the speaker’s words from constituting evidence for the hearer’s belief? By clarifying this point, it will be possible to (...)
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  • Being Pessimistic About the Objective Present.Derek Lam - 2020 - Synthese (12):1-16.
    Some philosophers argue that non-presentist A-theories problematically imply that we cannot know that this moment is present. The problem is usually presented as arising from the combination of the A-theoretic ideology of a privileged presentness and a non-presentist ontology. The goal of this essay is to show that the epistemic problem can be rephrased as a pessimistic induction. By doing so, I will show that the epistemic problem, in fact, stems from the A-theoretic ideology alone. Hence, once it is properly (...)
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  • Bayesianism and Self-Doubt.Darren Bradley - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):2225-2243.
    How should we respond to evidence when our evidence indicates that we are rationally impaired? I will defend a novel answer based on the analogy between self-doubt and memory loss. To believe that one is now impaired and previously was not is to believe that one’s epistemic position has deteriorated. Memory loss is also a form of epistemic deterioration. I argue that agents who suffer from epistemic deterioration should return to the priors they had at an earlier time. I develop (...)
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  • How to Solve the Puzzle of Peer Disagreement.Michele Palmira - 2019 - American Philosophical Quarterly 56 (1):83-96.
    While it seems hard to deny the epistemic significance of a disagreement with our acknowledged epistemic peers, there are certain disagreements, such as philosophical disagreements, which appear to be permissibly sustainable. These two claims, each independently plausible, are jointly puzzling. This paper argues for a solution to this puzzle. The main tenets of the solution are two. First, the peers ought to engage in a deliberative activity of discovering more about their epistemic position vis-à-vis the issue at stake. Secondly, the (...)
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  • Higher‐Order Evidence and the Limits of Defeat.Maria Lasonen-Aarnio - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (2):314-345.
    Recent authors have drawn attention to a new kind of defeating evidence commonly referred to as higher-order evidence. Such evidence works by inducing doubts that one’s doxastic state is the result of a flawed process – for instance, a process brought about by a reason-distorting drug. I argue that accommodating defeat by higher-order evidence requires a two-tiered theory of justification, and that the phenomenon gives rise to a puzzle. The puzzle is that at least in some situations involving higher-order defeaters (...)
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  • Disagreement, Question-Begging and Epistemic Self-Criticism.David Christensen - 2011 - Philosophers' Imprint 11.
    Responding rationally to the information that others disagree with one’s beliefs requires assessing the epistemic credentials of the opposing beliefs. Conciliatory accounts of disagreement flow in part from holding that these assessments must be independent from one’s own initial reasoning on the disputed matter. I argue that this claim, properly understood, does not have the untoward consequences some have worried about. Moreover, some of the difficulties it does engender must be faced by many less conciliatory accounts of disagreement.
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  • Philosophy Without Belief.Zach Barnett - 2019 - Mind 128 (509):109-138.
    Should we believe our controversial philosophical views? Recently, several authors have argued from broadly conciliationist premises that we should not. If they are right, we philosophers face a dilemma: If we believe our views, we are irrational. If we do not, we are not sincere in holding them. This paper offers a way out, proposing an attitude we can rationally take toward our views that can support sincerity of the appropriate sort. We should arrive at our views via a certain (...)
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  • Epistemology Without Guidance.Nick Hughes - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies.
    Epistemologists often appeal to the idea that a normative theory must provide useful, usable, guidance to argue for one normative epistemology over another. I argue that this is a mistake. Guidance considerations have no role to play in theory choice in epistemology. I show how this has implications for debates about the possibility and scope of epistemic dilemmas, the legitimacy of idealisation in Bayesian Epistemology, Uniqueness vs. Permissivism, sharp vs. mushy credences, and internalism vs. externalism.
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  • Does rationality demand higher-order certainty?Mattias Skipper - 2020 - Synthese 198 (12):11561-11585.
    Should you always be certain about what you should believe? In other words, does rationality demand higher-order certainty? First answer: Yes! Higher-order uncertainty can’t be rational, since it breeds at least a mild form of epistemic akrasia. Second answer: No! Higher-order certainty can’t be rational, since it licenses a dogmatic kind of insensitivity to higher-order evidence. Which answer wins out? The first, I argue. Once we get clearer about what higher-order certainty is, a view emerges on which higher-order certainty does (...)
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  • Reading the Bad News About Our Minds.Nicholas Silins - 2020 - Philosophical Issues 30 (1):293-310.
    Psychologists and neuroscientists have delivered a lot of bad news about the inner workings of our minds, raising challenging questions about the extent to which we are rational in important domains of our judgments. I will focus on a central case of an unsettling effect on our perception, and primarily aim to establish that there actually is no impact from it on the rationality of our perceptual beliefs. To reach my goal, I will start with a rough review of different (...)
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  • Rational Suspension.Alexandra Zinke - 2021 - Theoria 87 (5):1050-1066.
    Theoria, Volume 87, Issue 5, Page 1050-1066, October 2021.
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  • Justified Inference.Ralph Wedgwood - 2012 - Synthese 189 (2):273-295.
    What is the connection between justification and the kind of consequence relations that are studied by logic? In this essay, I shall try to provide an answer, by proposing a general conception of the kind of inference that counts as justified or rational.
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  • Disagreement in Science: Introduction to the Special Issue.Finnur Dellsén & Maria Baghramian - 2020 - Synthese (Suppl 25):1-11.
    Introduction to the Synthese Special Issue on Disagreement in Science.
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  • Disagreement in Science: Introduction to the Special Issue.Finnur Dellsén & Maria Baghramian - 2021 - Synthese 198 (S25):6011-6021.
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  • Some Lessons From Simulations of Scientific Disagreements.Dunja Šešelja - 2019 - Synthese 198 (Suppl 25):6143-6158.
    This paper examines lessons obtained by means of simulations in the form of agent-based models about the norms that are to guide disagreeing scientists. I focus on two types of epistemic and methodological norms: norms that guide one’s attitude towards one’s own theory, and norms that guide one’s attitude towards the opponent’s theory. Concerning I look into ABMs that have been designed to examine the context of peer disagreement. Here I challenge the conclusion that the given ABMs provide a support (...)
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  • Is Memory Merely Testimony From One's Former Self?David James Barnett - 2015 - Philosophical Review 124 (3):353-392.
    A natural view of testimony holds that a source's statements provide one with evidence about what the source believes, which in turn provides one with evidence about what is true. But some theorists have gone further and developed a broadly analogous view of memory. According to this view, which this essay calls the “diary model,” one's memory ordinarily serves as a means for one's present self to gain evidence about one's past judgments, and in turn about the truth. This essay (...)
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  • Perceptual Justification and the Cartesian Theater.David James Barnett - 2019 - Oxford Studies in Epistemology 6.
    According to a traditional Cartesian epistemology of perception, perception does not provide one with direct knowledge of the external world. Instead, your immediate perceptual evidence is limited to facts about your own visual experience, from which conclusions about the external world must be inferred. Cartesianism faces well-known skeptical challenges. But this chapter argues that any anti-Cartesian view strong enough to avoid these challenges must license a way of updating one’s beliefs in response to anticipated experiences that seems diachronically irrational. To (...)
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  • Higher-Order Evidence and the Dynamics of Self-Location: An Accuracy-Based Argument for Calibrationism.Brett Topey - manuscript
    The thesis that agents should calibrate their beliefs in the face of higher-order evidence—i.e., should adjust their first-order beliefs in response to evidence suggesting that the reasoning underlying those beliefs is faulty—is sometimes thought to be in tension with Bayesian approaches to belief update: in order to obey Bayesian norms, it's claimed, agents must remain steadfast in the face of higher-order evidence. But I argue that this claim is incorrect. In particular, I motivate a minimal constraint on a reasonable treatment (...)
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  • Externalism and Exploitability.Nilanjan Das - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    According to Bayesian orthodoxy, an agent should update---or at least should plan to update---her credences by conditionalization. Some have defended this claim by means of a diachronic Dutch book argument. They say: an agent who does not plan to update her credences by conditionalization is vulnerable (by her own lights) to a diachronic Dutch book, i.e., a sequence of bets which, when accepted, guarantee loss of utility. Here, I show that this argument is in tension with evidence externalism, i.e., the (...)
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  • Rational Polarization.Kevin Dorst - manuscript
    Predictable polarization is everywhere: we can often predict how people’s opinions—including our own—will shift over time. Empirical studies suggest that this is so when evidence is ambiguous. That fact is often thought to demonstrate human irrationality. It doesn’t. Bayesians will predictably polarize iff their evidence is ambiguous. And ours often is: the process of cognitive search—searching a cognitively-accessible space for an item of a particular profile—yields ambiguous evidence that can predictably polarize beliefs, despite being expected to make them more accurate. (...)
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  • Being Rational and Being Wrong.Kevin Dorst - manuscript
    Do people tend to be overconfident in their opinions? Many think so. They’ve run studies to test whether people are calibrated: whether their confidence in their opinions matches the proportion of those opinions that are true. Under certain conditions, people are systematically “over-calibrated”—for example, of the opinions they’re 80% confident in, only 60% are true. From this observed over-calibration, it’s inferred that people are irrationally overconfident. My question: When—and why—is this inference warranted? Answering this question requires articulating a general connection (...)
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  • On Acting as Judge in One’s Own (Epistemic) Case.David Christensen - 2018 - Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 93 (1):207-235.
    We often get reason to doubt the reliability of some of our own reasoning. The rational response to such evidence would seem to depend on how reliable one should estimate that reasoning to be. Independence principles constrain that reliability-assessment, to prevent question-begging reliance on the very reasoning being assessed. But this has consequences some find disturbing: can it be rational for an agent to bracket some of her reasons—which she may, after all, be assessing impeccably? So several arguments have been (...)
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  • Epistemic Paradise Lost: Saving What We Can with Stable Support.Anna-Maria A. Eder - forthcoming - In Nick Hughes (ed.), Epistemic Dilemmas. Oxford University Press.
    I focus on the No-Paradise Dilemma, which results from some initially plausible epistemic ideals, coupled with an assumption concerning our evidence. Our evidence indicates that we are not in an epistemic paradise, in which we do not experience cognitive failures. I opt for a resolution of the dilemma that is based on an evidentialist position that can be motivated independently of the dilemma. According to this position, it is rational for an agent to believe a proposition on the agent’s total (...)
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  • Embracing Incoherence.Claire Field - forthcoming - In Nick Hughes (ed.), Epistemic Dilemmas. Oxford University Press. pp. 1-29.
    Incoherence is usually regarded as a bad thing. Incoherence suggests irrationality, confusion, paradox. Incoherentism disagrees: incoherence is not always a bad thing, sometimes we ought to be incoherent. If correct, Incoherentism has important and controversial implications. It implies that rationality does not always require coherence. Dilemmism and Incoherentism both embrace conflict in epistemology. After identifying some important differences between these two ways of embracing conflict, I offer some reasons to prefer Incoherentism over Dilemmism. Namely, that Incoherentism allows us to deliberate (...)
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  • Evidential Preemption.Endre Begby - 2021 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 102 (3):515-530.
    As a general rule, whenever a hearer is justified in forming the belief that p on the basis of a speaker’s testimony, she will also be justified in assuming that the speaker has formed her belief appropriately in light of a relevantly large and representative sample of the evidence that bears on p. In simpler terms, a justification for taking someone’s testimony entails a justification for trusting her assessment of the evidence. This introduces the possibility of what I will call (...)
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  • Is higher-order evidence evidence?Eyal Tal - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 178 (10):3157-3175.
    Suppose we learn that we have a poor track record in forming beliefs rationally, or that a brilliant colleague thinks that we believe P irrationally. Does such input require us to revise those beliefs whose rationality is in question? When we gain information suggesting that our beliefs are irrational, we are in one of two general cases. In the first case we made no error, and our beliefs are rational. In that case the input to the contrary is misleading. In (...)
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  • A puzzle about enkratic reasoning.Jonathan Way - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 178 (10):3177-3196.
    Enkratic reasoning—reasoning from believing that you ought to do something to an intention to do that thing—seems good. But there is a puzzle about how it could be. Good reasoning preserves correctness, other things equal. But enkratic reasoning does not preserve correctness. This is because what you ought to do depends on your epistemic position, but what it is correct to intend does not. In this paper, I motivate these claims and thus show that there is a puzzle. I then (...)
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  • The Epistemic Function of Higher-Order Evidence.Declan Smithies - forthcoming - In Paul Silva & Luis Oliveira (eds.), Propositional and Doxastic Justification: New Perspectives in Epistemology.
    This chapter provides a critical overview of several influential proposals about the epistemic function of higher-order evidence. I start by criticizing accounts of higher-order evidence that appeal to evidential defeat (§1), epistemic conflicts (§2), and unreasonable knowledge (§3). Next, I propose an alternative account that appeals to a combination of improper basing (§4) and non-ideal rationality (§5). Finally, I conclude by summarizing my reasons for preferring this account of higher-order evidence to the alternatives (§6).
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  • Moral Disagreement Scepticism Leveled.Jonathan Dixon - 2021 - Ratio 34 (3):203-216.
    While many have argued that moral disagreement poses a challenge to moral knowledge, the precise nature of this challenge is controversial. Indeed, in the moral epistemology literature, there are many different versions of ‘the’ argument from moral disagreement to moral scepticism. This paper contributes to this vast literature on moral disagreement by arguing for two theses: 1. All (or nearly all) moral disagreement arguments share an underlying structure; and, 2. All moral disagreement arguments that satisfy this underlying structure cannot establish (...)
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  • Enkrasia or Evidentialism? Learning to Love Mismatch.Maria Lasonen-Aarnio - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (3):597-632.
    I formulate a resilient paradox about epistemic rationality, discuss and reject various solutions, and sketch a way out. The paradox exemplifies a tension between a wide range of views of epistemic justification, on the one hand, and enkratic requirements on rationality, on the other. According to the enkratic requirements, certain mismatched doxastic states are irrational, such as believing p, while believing that it is irrational for one to believe p. I focus on an evidentialist view of justification on which a (...)
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  • Higher-order defeat and intellectual responsibility.Ru Ye - 2020 - Synthese 197 (12):5435-5455.
    It’s widely accepted that higher-order defeaters, i.e., evidence that one’s belief is formed in an epistemically defective way, can defeat doxastic justification. However, it’s yet unclear how exactly such kind of defeat happens. Given that many theories of doxastic justification can be understood as fitting the schema of proper basing on propositional justifiers, we might attempt to explain the defeat either by arguing that a higher-order defeater defeats propositional justification or by arguing that it defeats proper basing. It has been (...)
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  • Epistemic authority: preemption through source sensitive defeat.Jan Constantin & Thomas Grundmann - 2020 - Synthese 197 (9):4109-4130.
    Modern societies are characterized by a division of epistemic labor between laypeople and epistemic authorities. Authorities are often far more competent than laypeople and can thus, ideally, inform their beliefs. But how should laypeople rationally respond to an authority’s beliefs if they already have beliefs and reasons of their own concerning some subject matter? According to the standard view, the beliefs of epistemic authorities are just further, albeit weighty, pieces of evidence. In contrast, the Preemption View claims that, when one (...)
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  • Defeaters in Current Epistemology: Introduction to the Special Issue.Luca Moretti & Tommaso Piazza - 2018 - Synthese 195 (7):2845-2854.
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  • Fallible Reasons on Behalf of Fallibilism.David Alexander - 2017 - Synthese 198 (5):3979-3998.
    In this paper I introduce a problem regarding whether there are good reasons to accept fallibilism about justified belief. According to this species of fallibilism, one can be justified in believing a proposition on the basis of reasons that do not justify certainty. Call such reasons “fallible reasons.” The problem is this: can one justifiably believe fallibilism on the basis of fallible reasons? To do so would seem to beg the question. If you are undecided as to whether you should (...)
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  • Defeating Looks.Kathrin Glüer - 2018 - Synthese 195 (7):2985-3012.
    In previous work, I have suggested a doxastic account of perceptual experience according to which experiences form a kind of belief: Beliefs with what I have called “phenomenal” or “looks-content”. I have argued that this account can not only accommodate the intuitive reason providing role of experience, but also its justificatory role. I have also argued that, in general, construing experience and perceptual beliefs, i.e. the beliefs most directly based on experience, as having different contents best accounts for the defeasibility (...)
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  • Undermining, Circularity, and Disagreement.Andrew Rotondo - 2013 - Synthese 190 (3):563-584.
    Sometimes we get what seem to be good reasons for believing that we’ve misevaluated our evidence for a proposition P. In those cases, can we use our evidence for P itself to show that we haven’t misevaluated our evidence for P? I show why doing so appears to employ viciously circular reasoning. However, I then argue that this appearance is illusory in certain cases and that we sometimes can legitimately reason in that way. This claim sheds new light on the (...)
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  • Inferential Internalism and Reflective Defeat.David Alexander - 2012 - Philosophia 40 (3):497-521.
    Inferential Internalists accept the Principle of Inferential Justification (PIJ), according to which one has justification for believing P on the basis of E only if one has justification for believing that E makes probable P. Richard Fumerton has defended PIJ by appeal to examples, and recently Adam Leite has argued that this principle is supported by considerations regarding the nature of responsible belief. In this paper, I defend a form of externalism against both arguments. This form of externalism recognizes what (...)
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  • Moderate Epistemic Akrasia.Nicolás Lo Guercio - 2018 - Crítica. Revista Hispanoamericana de Filosofía 50 (148):69-97.
    Moderate epistemic akrasia is the state a subject is in when she believes that p and suspends judgment about whether her evidence supports p. In this article it is argued that, given a certain understanding of the attitude of suspension of judgment, moderate epistemic akrasia is doxastically irrational. The paper starts with a brief introduction that makes explicit some background notions and clarifies the dialectics of the debate. Second, the well-known distinction between propositional and doxastic rationality is introduced and some (...)
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  • Anti-Exceptionalism About Requirements of Epistemic Rationality.Claire Field - 2021 - Acta Analytica 36 (3):423-441.
    I argue for the unexceptionality of evidence about what rationality requires. Specifically, I argue that, as for other topics, one’s total evidence can sometimes support false beliefs about this. Despite being prima facie innocuous, a number of philosophers have recently denied this. Some have argued that the facts about what rationality requires are highly dependent on the agent’s situation and change depending on what that situation is like. 2019). Others have argued that a particular subset of normative truths, those concerning (...)
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  • Transitional Attitudes and the Unmooring View of Higher-Order Evidence.Julia Staffel - forthcoming - Noûs.
    This paper proposes a novel answer to the question of what attitude agents should adopt when they receive misleading higher-order evidence that avoids the drawbacks of existing views. The answer builds on the independently motivated observation that there is a difference between attitudes that agents form as conclusions of their reasoning, called terminal attitudes, and attitudes that are formed in a transitional manner in the process of reasoning, called transitional attitudes. Terminal and transitional attitudes differ both in their descriptive and (...)
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  • Following the Argument Where It Leads.Thomas Kelly - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 154 (1):105-124.
    Throughout the history of western philosophy, the Socratic injunction to ‘follow the argument where it leads’ has exerted a powerful attraction. But what is it, exactly, to follow the argument where it leads? I explore this intellectual ideal and offer a modest proposal as to how we should understand it. On my proposal, following the argument where it leaves involves a kind of modalized reasonableness. I then consider the relationship between the ideal and common sense or ‘Moorean’ responses to revisionary (...)
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  • Suspension, Higher-Order Evidence, and Defeat.Errol Lord & Kurt Sylvan - forthcoming - In Mona Simion & Jessica Brown (eds.), Reasons, Justification, and Defeat. Oxford University Press.
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  • Misleading Higher-Order Evidence, Conflicting Ideals, and Defeasible Logic.Aleks Knoks - forthcoming - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.
    Thinking about misleading higher-order evidence naturally leads to a puzzle about epistemic rationality: If one’s total evidence can be radically misleading regarding itself, then two widely-accepted requirements of rationality come into conflict, suggesting that there are rational dilemmas. This paper focuses on an often misunderstood and underexplored response to this (and similar) puzzles, the so-called conflicting-ideals view. Drawing on work from defeasible logic, I propose understanding this view as a move away from the default metaepistemological position according to which rationality (...)
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  • How to Endorse Conciliationism.Will Fleisher - 2021 - Synthese 198 (10):9913-9939.
    I argue that recognizing a distinct doxastic attitude called endorsement, along with the epistemic norms governing it, solves the self-undermining problem for conciliationism about disagreement. I provide a novel account of how the self-undermining problem works by pointing out the auxiliary assumptions the objection relies on. These assumptions include commitment to certain epistemic principles linking belief in a theory to following prescriptions of that theory. I then argue that we have independent reason to recognize the attitude of endorsement. Endorsement is (...)
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  • Anti-Exceptionalism About Requirements of Epistemic Rationality.Claire Field - 2020 - Acta Analytica (3):1-19.
    I argue for the unexceptionality of evidence about what rationality requires. Specifically, I argue that, as for other topics, one’s total evidence can sometimes support false beliefs about this. Despite being prima facie innocuous, a number of philosophers have recently denied this. Some have argued that the facts about what rationality requires are highly dependent on the agent’s situation, and change depending on what that situation is like (Bradley, 2019). Others have argued that a particular subset of normative truths, those (...)
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  • The Problem of Unwelcome Epistemic Company.Joshua Blanchard - forthcoming - Episteme:1-13.
    Many of us are unmoved when it is objected that some morally or intellectually suspect source agrees with our belief. While we may tend to find this kind of guilt by epistemic association unproblematic, I argue that this tendency is a mistake. We sometimes face what I call the problem of unwelcome epistemic company. This is the problem of encountering agreement about the content your belief from a source whose faults give you reason to worry about the belief’s truth, normative (...)
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  • Recent Work on Higher-Order Evidence.Daniel Whiting - forthcoming - Analysis.
    A critical survey of recent work in epistemology on higher-order evidence. It discusses the nature of higher-order evidence, some puzzles it raises, responses to those puzzles, and problems facing them. It concludes by indicating connections between debates concerning higher-order evidence in epistemology and parallel debates in ethics and aesthetics.
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  • The Courage of Conviction.Sarah K. Paul - 2015 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (5-6):1-23.
    Is there a sense in which we exercise direct volitional control over our beliefs? Most agree that there is not, but discussions tend to focus on control in forming a belief. The focus here is on sustaining a belief over time in the face of ‘epistemic temptation’ to abandon it. It is argued that we do have a capacity for ‘doxastic self-control’ over time that is partly volitional in nature, and that its exercise is rationally permissible.
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  • Moral Hinges and Steadfastness.Chris Ranalli - 2021 - Metaphilosophy 52 (3-4):379-401.
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  • Conciliationism and Uniqueness.Nathan Ballantyne & E. J. Coffman - 2012 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (4):657-670.
    Two theses are central to recent work on the epistemology of disagreement: Conciliationism:?In a revealed peer disagreement over P, each thinker should give at least some weight to her peer's attitude. Uniqueness:?For any given proposition and total body of evidence, the evidence fully justifies exactly one level of confidence in the proposition. 1This paper is the product of full and equal collaboration between its authors. Does Conciliationism commit one to Uniqueness? Thomas Kelly 2010 has argued that it does. After some (...)
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