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The epistemology of thought experiments : first person versus third person approaches

In Peter A. French & Howard K. Wettstein (eds.), Midwest Studies in Philosophy. Blackwell. pp. 128-159 (2007)

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  1. Individual and Cross-Cultural Differences in Semantic Intuitions: New Experimental Findings.James R. Beebe - 2016 - Journal of Cognition and Culture 16 (3-4):322-357.
    In 2004 Edouard Machery, Ron Mallon, Shaun Nichols and Stephen Stich published what has become one of the most widely discussed papers in experimental philosophy, in which they reported that East Asian and Western participants had different intuitions about the semantic reference of proper names. A flurry of criticisms of their work has emerged, and although various replications have been performed, many critics remain unconvinced. We review the current debate over Machery et al.’s (2004) results and take note of which (...)
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  • Theories of Reference, Experimental Philosophy, and the Calibration of Intuitions.Manuel Pérez Otero - 2017 - Theoria : An International Journal for Theory, History and Fundations of Science 32 (1).
    E. Machery and some collaborators have used survey data to criticize Kripke’s anti-descriptivism about proper names. I highlight a number of drawbacks in the tests of Machery et al. Some of my objections concern their ambiguity. In particular, the responses that —according to them— reveal descriptivist intuitions can be interpreted as anti-descriptivist responses, for reasons that —as far as I know— have not been pointed out so far. Furthermore, their vignettes are apparently inconsistent. I also discuss other issues related to (...)
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  • Thin, Fine and with Sensitivity: A Metamethodology of Intuitions.James Andow - 2015 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology (1):1-21.
    Do philosophers use intuitions? Should philosophers use intuitions? Can philosophical methods (where intuitions are concerned) be improved upon? In order to answer these questions we need to have some idea of how we should go about answering them. I defend a way of going about methodology of intuitions: a metamethodology. I claim the following: (i) we should approach methodological questions about intuitions with a thin conception of intuitions in mind; (ii) we should carve intuitions finely; and, (iii) we should carve (...)
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  • Putting the Trolley in Order: Experimental Philosophy and the Loop Case.S. Matthew Liao, Alex Wiegmann, Joshua Alexander & Gerard Vong - 2012 - Philosophical Psychology 25 (5):661-671.
    In recent years, a number of philosophers have conducted empirical studies that survey people's intuitions about various subject matters in philosophy. Some have found that intuitions vary accordingly to seemingly irrelevant facts: facts about who is considering the hypothetical case, the presence or absence of certain kinds of content, or the context in which the hypothetical case is being considered. Our research applies this experimental philosophical methodology to Judith Jarvis Thomson's famous Loop Case, which she used to call into question (...)
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  • Framing How We Think About Disagreement.Joshua Alexander, Diana Betz, Chad Gonnerman & John Philip Waterman - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (10):2539-2566.
    Disagreement is a hot topic right now in epistemology, where there is spirited debate between epistemologists who argue that we should be moved by the fact that we disagree and those who argue that we need not. Both sides to this debate often use what is commonly called “the method of cases,” designing hypothetical cases involving peer disagreement and using what we think about those cases as evidence that specific normative theories are true or false, and as reasons for believing (...)
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  • A Defence of Experimental Philosophy in Aesthetics.Clotilde Torregrossa - 2017 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy:1-23.
    Although experimental philosophy is now over a decade old, it has only recently been introduced to the domain of philosophical aesthetics. So why is there already a need to defend it? Because, as I argue in this paper, we can anticipate the three main types of objection generally addressed to experimental philosophy and show that none of them concern experimental philosophers in aesthetics. I begin with some general considerations about experimental philosophy and its, sometimes conflicting, characteristics. This framework is designed (...)
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  • Speaker’s Reference, Semantic Reference, and Intuition.Richard Heck - 2018 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 9 (2):251-269.
    Some years ago, Machery, Mallon, Nichols, and Stich reported the results of experiments that reveal, they claim, cross-cultural differences in speaker’s ‘intuitions’ about Kripke’s famous Gödel–Schmidt case. Several authors have suggested, however, that the question they asked their subjects is ambiguous between speaker’s reference and semantic reference. Machery and colleagues have since made a number of replies. It is argued here that these are ineffective. The larger lesson, however, concerns the role that first-order philosophy should, and more importantly should not, (...)
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  • The Nature of Intuitions and Their Role in Material Object Metaphysics.Andrew Higgins - 2014 - Dissertation, University of Illinois
    I argue for three central theses: ‘intuition’ is ambiguous, in material object metaphysics ‘intuition’ refers to pre-theoretical beliefs, and these pre-theoretical beliefs are generated by an innate physical reasoning system. I begin by outlining the relevant background discussions on the nature of intuitions and their role in philosophy to motivate the need for a more careful investigation of the meaning of ‘intuition’ and the role of intuitions in specific sub-disciplines of philosophy. In chapters one and two I argue that ‘intuition’ (...)
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  • Evidence and Intuition.Yuri Cath - 2012 - Episteme 9 (4):311-328.
    Many philosophers accept a view – what I will call the intuition picture – according to which intuitions are crucial evidence in philosophy. Recently, Williamson has argued that such views are best abandoned because they lead to a psychologistic conception of philosophical evidence that encourages scepticism about the armchair judgements relied upon in philosophy. In this paper I respond to this criticism by showing how the intuition picture can be formulated in such a way that: it is consistent with a (...)
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  • Philosophers’ Biased Judgments Persist Despite Training, Expertise and Reflection.Eric Schwitzgebel & Fiery Cushman - 2015 - Cognition 141:127-137.
    We examined the effects of framing and order of presentation on professional philosophers’ judgments about a moral puzzle case (the “trolley problem”) and a version of the Tversky & Kahneman “Asian disease” scenario. Professional philosophers exhibited substantial framing effects and order effects, and were no less subject to such effects than was a comparison group of non-philosopher academic participants. Framing and order effects were not reduced by a forced delay during which participants were encouraged to consider “different variants of the (...)
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  • Referential Intuitions Are Still Problematic.Massimiliano Vignolo & Filippo Domaneschi - 2018 - Analysis 78 (3):472-483.
    In order to uphold the claim that referential intuitions are a reliable source of evidence for theories of reference, Machery et al. conducted an empirical research by testing truth-value judgments. First, we discuss a conceptual limitation of Machery et al. ’s experiment on truth-value judgments. Then, we present the data of an empirical survey that shows that people’s truth-value judgments are not congruent with their use of proper names. We explain why the results of our empirical research refute the conclusions (...)
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  • Philosophical Expertise and Scientific Expertise.Jennifer Nado - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (7):1026-1044.
    The “expertise defense” is the claim that philosophers have special expertise that allows them to resist the biases suggested by the findings of experimental philosophers. Typically, this defense is backed up by an analogy with expertise in science or other academic fields. Recently, however, studies have begun to suggest that philosophers' intuitions may be just as subject to inappropriate variation as those of the folk. Should we conclude that the expertise defense has been debunked? I'll argue that the analogy with (...)
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  • Intuition Fail: Philosophical Activity and the Limits of Expertise.Wesley Buckwalter - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (2):378-410.
    Experimental philosophers have empirically challenged the connection between intuition and philosophical expertise. This paper reviews these challenges alongside other research findings in cognitive science on expert performance and argues for three claims. First, evidence taken to challenge philosophical expertise may also be explained by the well-researched failures and limitations of genuine expertise. Second, studying the failures and limitations of experts across many fields provides a promising research program upon which to base a new model of philosophical expertise. Third, a model (...)
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  • Perspective in Intentional Action Attribution.Adam Feltz, Maegan Harris & Ashley Perez - 2012 - Philosophical Psychology 25 (5):673-687.
    In two experiments, we demonstrate that intentional action intuitions vary as a function of whether one brings about or observes an event. In experiment 1a (N?=?38), participants were less likely to judge that they intended (M?=?2.53, 7 point scale) or intentionally (M?=?2.67) brought about a harmful event compared to intention (M?=?4.16) and intentionality (M?=?4.11) judgments made about somebody else. Experiments 1b and 1c confirmed and extended this pattern of actor-observer differences. Experiment 2 suggested that these actor-observer differences are not likely (...)
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  • Folk Moral Relativism.Hagop Sarkissian, John Park, David Tien, Jennifer Wright & Joshua Knobe - 2011 - Mind and Language 26 (4):482-505.
    It has often been suggested that people's ordinary understanding of morality involves a belief in objective moral truths and a rejection of moral relativism. The results of six studies call this claim into question. Participants did offer apparently objectivist moral intuitions when considering individuals from their own culture, but they offered increasingly relativist intuitions considering individuals from increasingly different cultures or ways of life. The authors hypothesize that people do not have a fixed commitment to moral objectivism but instead tend (...)
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  • Neo-Confucianism, Experimental Philosophy and the Trouble with Intuitive Methods.Hagop Sarkissian - 2018 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 26 (5):812-828.
    ABSTRACTThe proper role of intuitions in philosophy has been debated throughout its history, and especially since the turn of the twenty-first century. The context of this recent debate within analytic philosophy has been the heightened interest in intuitions as data points that need to be accommodated or explained away by philosophical theories. This, in turn, has given rise to a sceptical movement called experimental philosophy, whose advocates seek to understand the nature and reliability of such intuitions. Yet such scepticism of (...)
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  • Explanatory Unification in Experimental Philosophy: Let’s Keep It Real.Frank Hindriks - 2019 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 10 (1):219-242.
    Experimental philosophers have discovered a large number of asymmetries in our intuitions about philosophically significant notions. Often those intuitions turned out to be sensitive to normative factors. Whereas optimists have insisted on a unified explanation of these findings, pessimists have argued that it is impossible to formulate a single factor explanation. I defend the intermediate position according to which unification is possible to some extent, but should be pursued within limits. The key issue that I address is how it is (...)
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  • The Composite Nature of Epistemic Justification.Paul Silva Jr - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (1).
    According to many, to have epistemic justification to believe P is just for it to be epistemically permissible to believe P. Others think it is for believing P to be epistemically good. Yet others think it has to do with being epistemically blameless in believing P. All such views of justification encounter problems. Here, a new view of justification is proposed according to which justification is a kind of composite normative status. The result is a view of justification that offers (...)
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  • Arguments Over Intuitions?Tomasz Wysocki - 2016 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-23.
    Deutsch 2010 claims that hypothetical scenarios are evaluated using arguments, not intuitions, and therefore experiments on intuitions are philosophically inconsequential. Using the Gettier case as an example, he identifies three arguments that are supposed to point to the right response to the case. In the paper, I present the results of studies ran on Polish, Indian, Spanish, and American participants that suggest that there’s no deep difference between evaluating the Gettier case with intuitions and evaluating it with Deutsch’s arguments. Specifically, (...)
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  • Philosophical Expertise.Jennifer Ellen Nado - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (9):631-641.
    Recent work in experimental philosophy has indicated that intuitions may be subject to several forms of bias, thereby casting doubt on the viability of intuition as an evidential source in philosophy. A common reply to these findings is the ‘expertise defense’ – the claim that although biases may be found in the intuitions of non-philosophers, persons with expertise in philosophy will be resistant to these biases. Much debate over the expertise defense has centered over the question of the burden of (...)
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  • The Intellectual Given.John Bengson - 2015 - Mind 124 (495):707-760.
    Intuition is sometimes derided as an abstruse or esoteric phenomenon akin to crystal-ball gazing. Such derision appears to be fuelled primarily by the suggestion, evidently endorsed by traditional rationalists such as Plato and Descartes, that intuition is a kind of direct, immediate apprehension akin to perception. This paper suggests that although the perceptual analogy has often been dismissed as encouraging a theoretically useless metaphor, a quasi-perceptualist view of intuition may enable rationalists to begin to meet the challenge of supplying a (...)
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  • Conceptual Analysis and Epistemic Progress.Magdalena Balcerak Jackson - 2013 - Synthese 190 (15):3053-3074.
    This essay concerns the question of how we make genuine epistemic progress through conceptual analysis. Our way into this issue will be through consideration of the paradox of analysis. The paradox challenges us to explain how a given statement can make a substantive contribution to our knowledge, even while it purports merely to make explicit what one’s grasp of the concept under scrutiny consists in. The paradox is often treated primarily as a semantic puzzle. However, in “Sect. 1” I argue (...)
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  • Intuitive Expertise and Intuitions About Knowledge.Joachim Horvath & Alex Wiegmann - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (10):2701-2726.
    Experimental restrictionists have challenged philosophers’ reliance on intuitions about thought experiment cases based on experimental findings. According to the expertise defense, only the intuitions of philosophical experts count—yet the bulk of experimental philosophy consists in studies with lay people. In this paper, we argue that direct strategies for assessing the expertise defense are preferable to indirect strategies. A direct argument in support of the expertise defense would have to show: first, that there is a significant difference between expert and lay (...)
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  • Counteractuals, Counterfactuals and Semantic Intuitions.Jesper Kallestrup - 2016 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 7 (1):35-54.
    Machery et al. claim that analytic philosophers of language are committed to a method of cases according to which theories of reference are assessed by consulting semantic intuitions about actual and possible cases. Since empirical evidence suggests that such intuitions vary both within and across cultures, these experimental semanticists conclude that the traditional attempt at pursuing such theories is misguided. Against the backdrop of Kripke’s anti-descriptivist arguments, this paper offers a novel response to the challenge posed by Machery et al., (...)
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  • Reading Conflicted Minds: An Empirical Follow-Up to Knobe and Roedder.Chad Gonnerman - 2008 - Philosophical Psychology 21 (2):193 – 205.
    Recently Joshua Knobe and Erica Roedder found that folk attributions of valuing tend to vary according to the perceived moral goodness of the object of value. This is an interesting finding, but it remains unclear what, precisely, it means. Knobe and Roedder argue that it indicates that the concept MORAL GOODNESS is a feature of the concept VALUING. In this article, I present a study of folk attributions of desires and moral beliefs that undermines this conclusion. I then propose the (...)
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  • Are Philosophers Expert Intuiters?Jonathan M. Weinberg, Chad Gonnerman, Cameron Buckner & Joshua Alexander - 2010 - Philosophical Psychology 23 (3):331-355.
    Recent experimental philosophy arguments have raised trouble for philosophers' reliance on armchair intuitions. One popular line of response has been the expertise defense: philosophers are highly-trained experts, whereas the subjects in the experimental philosophy studies have generally been ordinary undergraduates, and so there's no reason to think philosophers will make the same mistakes. But this deploys a substantive empirical claim, that philosophers' training indeed inculcates sufficient protection from such mistakes. We canvass the psychological literature on expertise, which indicates that people (...)
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  • The Philosophical Personality Argument.Adam Feltz & Edward Cokely - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 161 (2):227-246.
    Perhaps personality traits substantially influence one’s philosophically relevant intuitions. This suggestion is not only possible, it is consistent with a growing body of empirical research: Personality traits have been shown to be systematically related to diverse intuitions concerning some fundamental philosophical debates. We argue that this fact, in conjunction with the plausible principle that almost all adequate philosophical views should take into account all available and relevant evidence, calls into question some prominent approaches to traditional philosophical projects. To this end, (...)
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  • Intuitions as Evidence, Philosophical Expertise and the Developmental Challenge.Steve Clarke - 2013 - Philosophical Papers 42 (2):175-207.
    Appeals to intuitions as evidence in philosophy are challenged by experimental philosophers and other critics. A common response to experimental philosophical criticisms is to hold that only professional philosophers? intuitions count as evidence in philosophy. This ?expert intuitions defence? is inadequate for two reasons. First, recent studies indicate significant variability in professional philosophers? intuitions. Second, the academic literature on professional intuitions gives us reasons to doubt that professional philosophers develop truth-apt intuitions. The onus falls on those who mount the expert (...)
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  • Attitudes Towards Reference and Replaceability.Christopher Grau & Cynthia Pury - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (2):155-168.
    Robert Kraut has proposed an analogy between valuing a loved one as irreplaceable and the sort of “rigid” attachment that (according to Saul Kripke’s account) occurs with the reference of proper names. We wanted to see if individuals with Kripkean intuitions were indeed more likely to value loved ones (and other persons and things) as irreplaceable. In this empirical study, 162 participants completed an online questionnaire asking them to consider how appropriate it would be to feel the same way about (...)
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  • Moral Valence and Semantic Intuitions.James R. Beebe & Ryan J. Undercoffer - 2015 - Erkenntnis 80 (2):445-466.
    Despite the swirling tide of controversy surrounding the work of Machery et al. , the cross-cultural differences they observed in semantic intuitions about the reference of proper names have proven to be robust. In the present article, we report cross-cultural and individual differences in semantic intuitions obtained using new experimental materials. In light of the pervasiveness of the Knobe effect and the fact that Machery et al.’s original materials incorporated elements of wrongdoing but did not control for their influence, we (...)
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  • Lottery Judgments: A Philosophical and Experimental Study.Philip A. Ebert, Martin Smith & Ian Durbach - 2018 - Philosophical Psychology 31 (1):110-138.
    In this paper, we present the results of two surveys that investigate subjects’ judgments about what can be known or justifiably believed about lottery outcomes on the basis of statistical evidence, testimonial evidence, and “mixed” evidence, while considering possible anchoring and priming effects. We discuss these results in light of seven distinct hypotheses that capture various claims made by philosophers about lay people’s lottery judgments. We conclude by summarizing the main findings, pointing to future research, and comparing our findings to (...)
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  • Philosophical Methodology: The Current Debate.Anand J. Vaidya - 2010 - Philosophical Psychology 23 (3):391-417.
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  • Is Intuition Based On Understanding?[I Thank Jo].Elijah Chudnoff - 2013 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 86 (1):42-67.
    According to the most popular non-skeptical views about intuition, intuitions justify beliefs because they are based on understanding. More precisely: if intuiting that p justifies you in believing that p it does so because your intuition is based on your understanding of the proposition that p. The aim of this paper is to raise some challenges for accounts of intuitive justification along these lines. I pursue this project from a non-skeptical perspective. I argue that there are cases in which intuiting (...)
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  • The Virtues of Ignorance.Adam Feltz & Edward T. Cokely - 2012 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 3 (3):335-350.
    It is commonly claimed that fully virtuous individuals cannot be ignorant and that everyday intuitions support this fact. Others maintain that there are virtues of ignorance and most people recognize them. Both views cannot be correct. We report evidence from three experiments suggesting that ignorance does not rule out folk attributions of virtue. Additionally, results show that many of these judgments can be predicted by one’s emotional stability—a heritable personality trait. We argue that these results are philosophically important for the (...)
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  • Persistent Bias in Expert Judgments About Free Will and Moral Responsibility: A Test of the Expertise Defense.Eric Schulz, Edward T. Cokely & Adam Feltz - 2011 - Consciousness and Cognition 20 (4):1722-1731.
    Many philosophers appeal to intuitions to support some philosophical views. However, there is reason to be concerned about this practice as scientific evidence has documented systematic bias in philosophically relevant intuitions as a function of seemingly irrelevant features (e.g., personality). One popular defense used to insulate philosophers from these concerns holds that philosophical expertise eliminates the influence of these extraneous factors. Here, we test this assumption. We present data suggesting that verifiable philosophical expertise in the free will debate-as measured by (...)
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  • Three Arguments Against the Expertise Defense.Moti Mizrahi - 2015 - Metaphilosophy 46 (1):52-64.
    Experimental philosophers have challenged friends of the expertise defense to show that the intuitive judgments of professional philosophers are different from the intuitive judgments of nonphilosophers, and the intuitive judgments of professional philosophers are better than the intuitive judgments of nonphilosophers, in ways that are relevant to the truth or falsity of such judgments. Friends of the expertise defense have responded by arguing that the burden of proof lies with experimental philosophers. This article sketches three arguments which show that both (...)
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  • Persistence Through Function Preservation.David Rose - 2015 - Synthese 192 (1):97-146.
    When do the folk think that material objects persist? Many metaphysicians have wanted a view which fits with folk intuitions, yet there is little agreement about what the folk intuit. I provide a range of empirical evidence which suggests that the folk operate with a teleological view of persistence: the folk tend to intuit that a material object survives alterations when its function is preserved. Given that the folk operate with a teleological view of persistence, I argue for a debunking (...)
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  • Definite Descriptions and the Alleged East–West Variation in Judgments About Reference.Yu Izumi, Masashi Kasaki, Yan Zhou & Sobei Oda - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (5):1183-1205.
    Machery et al. presented data suggesting the existence of cross-cultural variation in judgments about the reference of proper names. In this paper, we examine a previously overlooked confound in the subsequent studies that attempt to replicate the results of Machery et al. using East Asian languages. Machery et al. and Sytsma et al. claim that they have successfully replicated the original finding with probes written in Chinese and Japanese, respectively. These studies, however, crucially rely on uses of articleless, ‘bare noun (...)
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  • How Not to Test for Philosophical Expertise.Regina A. Rini - 2015 - Synthese 192 (2):431-452.
    Recent empirical work appears to suggest that the moral intuitions of professional philosophers are just as vulnerable to distorting psychological factors as are those of ordinary people. This paper assesses these recent tests of the ‘expertise defense’ of philosophical intuition. I argue that the use of familiar cases and principles constitutes a methodological problem. Since these items are familiar to philosophers, but not ordinary people, the two subject groups do not confront identical cognitive tasks. Reflection on this point shows that (...)
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  • Theories of Reference and Experimental Philosophy.James Genone - 2012 - Philosophy Compass 7 (2):152-163.
    In recent years, experimental philosophers have questioned the reliance of philosophical arguments on intuitions elicited by thought experiments. These challenges seek to undermine the use of this methodology for a particular domain of theorizing, and in some cases to raise doubts about the viability of philosophical work in the domain in question. The topic of semantic reference has been an important area for discussion of these issues, one in which critics of the reliance on intuitions have made particularly strong claims (...)
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  • Intuitions, Meaning, and Normativity: Why Intuition Theory Supports a Non‐Descriptivist Metaethic.Matthew S. Bedke - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (1):144-177.
    Non-descriptivists in metaethics should say more about intuitions. For one popular theory has it that case-based intuitions are in the business of correctly categorizing or classifying merely by bringing to bear a semantic or conceptual competence. If so, then the fact that all normative predicates have case-based intuitions involving them shows that they too are in the business of categorizing or classifying things. This favors a descriptivist position in metaethics—normative predicates have descriptive content—and disfavors a purely non-descriptivist position, like pure (...)
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  • Analogies, Moral Intuitions, and the Expertise Defence.Regina A. Rini - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (2):169-181.
    The evidential value of moral intuitions has been challenged by psychological work showing that the intuitions of ordinary people are affected by distorting factors. One reply to this challenge, the expertise defence, claims that training in philosophical thinking confers enhanced reliability on the intuitions of professional philosophers. This defence is often expressed through analogy: since we do not allow doubts about folk judgments in domains like mathematics or physics to undermine the plausibility of judgments by experts in these domains, we (...)
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  • Intuitions in Philosophical Semantics.Daniel Cohnitz & Jussi Haukioja - 2015 - Erkenntnis 80 (3):617-641.
    We argue that the term “intuition”, as it is used in metaphilosophy, is ambiguous between at least four different senses. In philosophy of language, the relevant “intuitions” are either the outputs of our competence to interpret and produce linguistic expressions, or the speakers’ or hearers’ own reports of these outputs. The semantic facts that philosophers of language are interested in are determined by the outputs of our competence. Hence, philosophers of language should be interested in investigating these, and they do (...)
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  • Interpreting Intuition: Experimental Philosophy of Language.Jeffrey Maynes - 2015 - Philosophical Psychology 28 (2):260-278.
    The role of intuition in Kripke's arguments for the causal-historical theory of reference has been a topic of recent debate, particularly in light of empirical work on these intuitions. In this paper, I develop three interpretations of the role intuition might play in Kripke's arguments. The first aim of this exercise is to help clarify the options available to interpreters of Kripke, and the consequences for the experimental investigation of Kripkean intuitions. The second aim is to show that understanding the (...)
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  • Do You Know More When It Matters Less?Adam Feltz & Chris Zarpentine - 2010 - Philosophical Psychology 23 (5):683–706.
    According to intellectualism, what a person knows is solely a function of the evidential features of the person's situation. Anti-intellectualism is the view that what a person knows is more than simply a function of the evidential features of the person's situation. Jason Stanley (2005) argues that, in addition to “traditional factors,” our ordinary practice of knowledge ascription is sensitive to the practical facts of a subject's situation. In this paper, we investigate this question empirically. Our results indicate that Stanley's (...)
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  • The Reference of Proper Names: Testing Usage and Intuitions.Michael Devitt & Nicolas Porot - 2018 - Cognitive Science 42 (5):1552-1585.
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  • Thought Experiments, Real Experiments, and the Expertise Objection.Christopher Hitchcock - 2012 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 2 (2):205-218.
    It is a commonplace that in philosophy, intuitions supply evidence for and against philosophical theories. Recent work in experimental philosophy has brought to bear the intuitions of philosophically naïve subjects in a number of different ways. One line of response to this work has been to claim that philosophers have expertise that privileges their intuitive judgments, and allows them to disregard the judgments of non-experts. This expertise is supposed to be analogous to the expertise of the mathematician or the physicist. (...)
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  • Awareness of Abstract Objects.Elijah Chudnoff - 2013 - Noûs 47 (4):706-726.
    Awareness is a two-place determinable relation some determinates of which are seeing, hearing, etc. Abstract objects are items such as universals and functions, which contrast with concrete objects such as solids and liquids. It is uncontroversial that we are sometimes aware of concrete objects. In this paper I explore the more controversial topic of awareness of abstract objects. I distinguish two questions. First, the Existence Question: are there any experiences that make their subjects aware of abstract objects? Second, the Grounding (...)
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  • How (Not) to React to Experimental Philosophy.Joachim Horvath - 2010 - Philosophical Psychology 23 (4):447-480.
    In this paper, I am going to offer a reconstruction of a challenge to intuition-based armchair philosophy that has been put forward by experimental philosophers of a restrictionist stripe, which I will call the 'master argument'. I will then discuss a number of popular objections to this argument and explain why they either fail to cast doubt on its first, empirical premise or do not go deep enough to make for a lasting rebuttal. Next, I will consider two more promising (...)
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  • A New Perspective Concerning Experiments on Semantic Intuitions.Justin Sytsma & Jonathan Livengood - 2011 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (2):315-332.
    Machery, Mallon, Nichols, and Stich [2004; forthcoming] use experimental methods to raise a spectre of doubt about reliance on intuitions in developing theories of reference which are then deployed in philosophical arguments outside the philosophy of language. Machery et al. ran a cross-cultural survey asking Western and East Asian participants about a famous case from the philosophical literature on reference (Kripke's G del example). They interpret their results as indicating that there is significant variation in participants' intuitions about semantic reference (...)
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