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Understanding and Structure

In Stephen R. Grimm (ed.), Making Sense of the World: New Essays on the Philosophy of Understanding. Oxford University Press (2017)

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  1. Desire That Amounts to Knowledge.Allan Hazlett - 2021 - Philosophical Quarterly 71 (1):56-73.
    I argue that desire sometimes amounts to knowledge, in the same sense that belief sometimes amounts to knowledge. The argument rests on two assumptions: that goodness is the correctness condition for desire and that knowledge is apt mental representation. Desire that amounts to knowledge—or ‘conative knowledge’—is illustrated by cases in which someone knows the goodness of something despite not believing that it is good.
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  • Non-Tethered Understanding and Scientific Pluralism.Rico Hauswald - 2021 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 52 (3):371-388.
    I examine situations in which we say that different subjects have ‘different’, ‘competing’, or ‘conflicting understandings’ of a phenomenon. In order to make sense of such situations, we should turn our attention to an often neglected ambiguity in the word ‘understanding’. Whereas the notion of understanding that is typically discussed in philosophy is, to use Elgin’s terms, tethered to the facts, there is another notion of understanding that is not tethered in the same way. This latter notion is relevant because, (...)
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  • Seek the Joints! Avoid the Gruesome! Fidelity as an Epistemic Value.Peter Finocchiaro - forthcoming - Episteme:1-17.
    A belief is valuable when it "gets it right". This "getting it right" is often understood solely as a matter of truth. But there is a second sense of "getting it right" worth exploring. According to this second sense, a belief "gets it right" when its concepts accurately match the way the world is objectively organized -- that is, when its concepts are joint-carving, or have fidelity. In this paper, I explore the relationship between fidelity and epistemic value. While many (...)
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  • Realism and the Absence of Value.Shamik Dasgupta - 2018 - Philosophical Review 127 (3):279-322.
    Much recent metaphysics is built around notions such as naturalness, fundamentality, grounding, dependence, essence, and others besides. In this article I raise a problem for this kind of metaphysics, the “problem of missing value.” I survey a number of possible solutions to the problem and find them all wanting. This suggests a return to a kind of Goodmanian view that the world is a structureless mess onto which we project our own categorizations, not something with categories already built in.
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  • Understanding and Testimony.Allan Hazlett - forthcoming - In Jennifer Lackey & Aidan McGlynn (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Social Epistemology. Oxford.
    Can understanding be transmitted by testimony, in the same sense that propositional knowledge can be transmitted by testimony? Some contemporary philosophers – call them testimonial understanding pessimists – say No, and others – call them testimonial understanding optimists – say Yes. In this chapter I will articulate testimonial understanding pessimism (§1) and consider some arguments for it (§2).
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  • Testimony, Understanding, and Art Criticism.Allan Hazlett - forthcoming - In Christy Mag Uidhir (ed.), Philosophy and Art: New Essays at the Intersection. Oxford University Press.
    I present a puzzle – the “puzzle of aesthetic testimony” – along with a solution to it that appeals to the impossibility of testimonial understanding. I'll criticize this solution by defending the possibility of testimonial understanding, including testimonial aesthetic understanding.
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  • Conceptual evaluation: epistemic.Alejandro Pérez Carballo - 2020 - In Alexis Burgess, Herman Cappelen & David Plunkett (eds.), Conceptual Engineering and Conceptual Ethics. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 304-332.
    On a view implicitly endorsed by many, a concept is epistemically better than another if and because it does a better job at ‘carving at the joints', or if the property corresponding to it is ‘more natural' than the one corresponding to another. This chapter offers an argument against this seemingly plausible thought, starting from three key observations about the way we use and evaluate concepts from en epistemic perspective: that we look for concepts that play a role in explanations (...)
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