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The Epistemology of Forgetting

Erkenntnis 74 (3):399-424 (2011)

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  1. Reliabilism: Holistic or Simple?Jeffrey Dunn - 2012 - Episteme 9 (3):225-233.
    Simple versions of Reliabilism about justification say that S's believing that p is justified if and only if the belief was produced by a belief-forming process that is reliable above some high threshold. Alvin Goldman, in Epistemology and Cognition, argues for a more complex version of the view according to which it is total epistemic systems that are assessed for reliability, rather than individual processes. Why prefer this more complex version of Reliabilism? Two reasons suggest themselves. First, it seems that (...)
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  • Memory is a Modeling System.Sara Aronowitz - 2019 - Mind and Language 34 (4):483-502.
    This paper aims to reconfigure the place of memory in epistemology. I start by rethinking the problem that memory systems solve; rather than merely functioning to store information, I argue that the core function of any memory system is to support accurate and relevant retrieval. This way of specifying the function of memory has consequences for which structures and mechanisms make up a memory system. In brief, memory systems are modeling systems. This means that they generate, update and manage a (...)
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  • Internalism and the Problem of Stored Beliefs.Matthew Frise - 2017 - Erkenntnis 82 (2):285-304.
    A belief is stored if it is in no way before the subject’s mind. The problem of stored beliefs is that of satisfactorily explaining how the stored beliefs which seem justified are indeed justified. In this paper I challenge the two main internalist attempts to solve this problem. Internalism about epistemic justification, at a minimum, states that one’s mental life alone determines what one is justified in believing. First I dispute the attempt from epistemic conservatism, which states that believing justifies (...)
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  • Forgetting.Matthew Frise - 2018 - In Kourken Michaelian, Dorothea Debus & Denis Perrin (eds.), New Directions in the Philosophy of Memory. Routledge. pp. 223-240.
    Forgetting is importantly related to remembering, evidence possession, epistemic virtue, personal identity, and a host of highly-researched memory conditions. In this paper I examine the nature of forgetting. I canvass the viable options for forgetting’s ontological category, type of content, characteristic relation to content, and scale. I distinguish several theories of forgetting in the philosophy and psychology of memory literatures, theories that diverge on these options. The best theories from the literature, I claim, fail two critical tests that I develop (...)
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  • Personal Memories.Marina Trakas - 2015 - Dissertation, Macquarie University
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  • On the Blameworthiness of Forgetting.Sven Bernecker - 2018 - In Dorothea Debus Kourken Michaelian (ed.), New Directions in the Philosophy of Memory. London: Routledge. pp. 241-258.
    It is a mistake to think that we cannot be morally responsible for forgetting because, as a matter of principle, forgetting is outside of our control. Sometimes we do have control over our forgetting. When forgetting is under our control there is no question that it is the proper object of praise and blame. But we can also be morally responsible for forgetting something when it is beyond our control that we forget that thing. The literature contains three accounts of (...)
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  • Epistemically Transformative Experience.Jane Friedman - manuscript
    A discussion of L.A. Paul's 'Transformative Experience' from an Author Meets Critics session at the 2015 Pacific APA.
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  • Is Memory for Remembering? Recollection as a Form of Episodic Hypothetical Thinking.Felipe De Brigard - 2014 - Synthese 191 (2):1-31.
    Misremembering is a systematic and ordinary occurrence in our daily lives. Since it is commonly assumed that the function of memory is to remember the past, misremembering is typically thought to happen because our memory system malfunctions. In this paper I argue that not all cases of misremembering are due to failures in our memory system. In particular, I argue that many ordinary cases of misremembering should not be seen as instances of memory’s malfunction, but rather as the normal result (...)
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  • The Lottery Paradox and the Pragmatics of Belief.Igor Douven - 2012 - Dialectica 66 (3):351-373.
    The thesis that high probability suffices for rational belief, while initially plausible, is known to face the Lottery Paradox. The present paper proposes an amended version of that thesis which escapes the Lottery Paradox. The amendment is argued to be plausible on independent grounds.
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  • Identity, Immortality, Happiness: Pick Two.Shimon Edelman - 2018 - Journal of Evolution and Technology 28 (1):1-17.
    To the extent that the performance of embodied and situated cognitive agents is predicated on fore- thought;such agents must remember; and learn from; the past to predict the future. In complex; non-stationaryenvironments; such learning is facilitated by an intrinsic motivation to seek novelty. A significant part of anagent’s identity is thus constituted by its remembered distilled cumulative life experience; which the agent isdriven to constantly expand. The combination of the drive to novelty with practical limits on memorycapacity posits a problem. (...)
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  • The Psychology of Memory, Extended Cognition, and Socially Distributed Remembering.John Sutton, Celia B. Harris, Paul G. Keil & Amanda J. Barnier - 2010 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 9 (4):521-560.
    This paper introduces a new, expanded range of relevant cognitive psychological research on collaborative recall and social memory to the philosophical debate on extended and distributed cognition. We start by examining the case for extended cognition based on the complementarity of inner and outer resources, by which neural, bodily, social, and environmental resources with disparate but complementary properties are integrated into hybrid cognitive systems, transforming or augmenting the nature of remembering or decision-making. Adams and Aizawa, noting this distinctive complementarity argument, (...)
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  • Confabulating as Unreliable Imagining: In Defence of the Simulationist Account of Unsuccessful Remembering.Kourken Michaelian - forthcoming - Topoi:1-16.
    This paper responds to Bernecker’s attack on Michaelian’s simulationist account of confabulation, as well as his defence of the causalist account of confabulation :432–447, 2016a) against Michaelian’s attack on it. The paper first argues that the simulationist account survives Bernecker’s attack, which takes the form of arguments from the possibility of unjustified memory and justified confabulation, unscathed. It then concedes that Bernecker’s defence of the causalist account against Michaelian’s attack, which takes the form of arguments from the possibility of veridical (...)
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  • Confabulation and Constructive Memory.Sarah K. Robins - 2019 - Synthese 196 (6):2135-2151.
    Confabulation is a symptom central to many psychiatric diagnoses and can be severely debilitating to those who exhibit the symptom. Theorists, scientists, and clinicians have an understandable interest in the nature of confabulation—pursuing ways to define, identify, treat, and perhaps even prevent this memory disorder. Appeals to confabulation as a clinical symptom rely on an account of memory’s function from which cases like the above can be contrasted. Accounting for confabulation is thus an important desideratum for any candidate theory of (...)
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  • Confabulating, Misremembering, Relearning: The Simulation Theory of Memory and Unsuccessful Remembering.Kourken Michaelian - 2016 - Frontiers in Psychology 7:1857.
    This articles develops a taxonomy of memory errors in terms of three conditions: the accuracy of the memory representation, the reliability of the memory process, and the internality (with respect to the remembering subject) of that process. Unlike previous taxonomies, which appeal to retention of information rather than reliability or internality, this taxonomy can accommodate not only misremembering (e.g., the DRM effect), falsidical confabulation, and veridical relearning but also veridical confabulation and falsidical relearning. Moreover, because it does not assume that (...)
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  • „Ich habe mich sozusagen selbst verloren“ – Biographische Identität, autobiographisches Gedächtnis und Alzheimer-Demenz.Michael Jungert - 2018 - Zeitschrift Für Praktische Philosophie 5 (1):133-152.
    Der Artikel untersucht den Zusammenhang zwischen Erinnerung, Vergessen und personaler Identität und wendet die Ergebnisse auf den Fall der Alzheimer-Demenz an. Während in der philosophischen Debatte Gedächtnis und Erinnerung zumeist im Kontext von Theorien zur diachronen Identität als formale Kriterien für die Zuschreibung von Identität über die Zeit aufgefasst werden, steht hier das Konzept der biographischen Identität im Zentrum. Es wird argumentiert, dass sowohl explizite als auch implizite Erinnerungen und das Wechselspiel zwischen beiden auf unterschiedliche Weise an der Konstituierung und (...)
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  • A Causal Theory of Mnemonic Confabulation.Sven Bernecker - 2017 - Frontiers in Psychology 8.
    This paper attempts to answer the question of what defines mnemonic confabulation vis-à-vis genuine memory. The two extant accounts of mnemonic confabulation as “false memory” and as ill-grounded memory are shown to be problematic, for they cannot account for the possibility of veridical confabulation, ill-grounded memory, and wellgrounded confabulation. This paper argues that the defining characteristic of mnemonic confabulation is that it lacks the appropriate causal history. In the confabulation case, there is no proper counterfactual dependence of the state of (...)
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  • Understanding and Its Role in Inquiry.Benjamin T. Rancourt - unknown
    In this dissertation, I argue that understanding possesses unique epistemic value. I propose and defend a novel account of understanding that I call the management account of understanding, which is the view that an agent A understands a subject matter S just in case A has the ability to extract the relevant information and exploit it with the relevant cognitive capacities to answer questions in S. Since inquiry is the process of raising and answering questions, I argue that without understanding, (...)
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  • A Duty of Ignorance.David Matheson - 2013 - Episteme 10 (2):193-205.
    Conjoined with the claim that there is a moral right to privacy, each of the major contemporary accounts of privacy implies a duty of ignorance for those against whom the right is held. In this paper I consider and respond to a compelling argument that challenges these accounts (or the claim about a right to privacy) in the light of this implication. A crucial premise of the argument is that we cannot ever be morally obligated to become ignorant of information (...)
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  • The Information Effect: Constructive Memory, Testimony, and Epistemic Luck.Kourken Michaelian - 2013 - Synthese 190 (12):2429-2456.
    The incorporation of post-event testimonial information into an agent’s memory representation of the event via constructive memory processes gives rise to the misinformation effect, in which the incorporation of inaccurate testimonial information results in the formation of a false memory belief. While psychological research has focussed primarily on the incorporation of inaccurate information, the incorporation of accurate information raises a particularly interesting epistemological question: do the resulting memory beliefs qualify as knowledge? It is intuitively plausible that they do not, for (...)
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  • (Social) Metacognition and (Self-)Trust.Kourken Michaelian - 2012 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 3 (4):481-514.
    What entitles you to rely on information received from others? What entitles you to rely on information retrieved from your own memory? Intuitively, you are entitled simply to trust yourself, while you should monitor others for signs of untrustworthiness. This article makes a case for inverting the intuitive view, arguing that metacognitive monitoring of oneself is fundamental to the reliability of memory, while monitoring of others does not play a significant role in ensuring the reliability of testimony.
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  • Events, Narratives and Memory.Nazim Keven - 2016 - Synthese 193 (8).
    Whether non-human animals can have episodic memories remains the subject of extensive debate. A number of prominent memory researchers defend the view that animals do not have the same kind of episodic memory as humans do, whereas others argue that some animals have episodic-like memory—i.e., they can remember what, where and when an event happened. Defining what constitutes episodic memory has proven to be difficult. In this paper, I propose a dual systems account and provide evidence for a distinction between (...)
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  • Junk Beliefs and Interest‐Driven Epistemology.Jane Friedman - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 97 (3):568-583.
    In this paper I revisit Gilbert Harman's arguments for a "clutter avoidance" norm. The norm -- which says that we ought to avoid cluttering our minds with trivialities -- is widely endorsed. I argue that it has some fairly dramatic consequences for normative epistemology.
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  • The Episodicity of Memory.D. Perrin & S. Rousset - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (3):291-312.
    Although episodic memory is a widely studied form of memory both in philosophy and psychology, it still raises many burning questions regarding its definition and even its acceptance. Over the last two decades, cross-disciplinary discussions between these two fields have increased as they tackle shared concerns, such as the phenomenology of recollection, and therefore allow for fruitful interaction. This editorial introduction aims to provide a comprehensive and up-to-date presentation of the main existing conceptions and issues on the topic. After delineating (...)
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  • Cognition in Skilled Action: Meshed Control and the Varieties of Skill Experience.Wayne Christensen, John Sutton & Doris J. F. McIlwain - 2016 - Mind and Language 31 (1):37-66.
    We present a synthetic theory of skilled action which proposes that cognitive processes make an important contribution to almost all skilled action, contrary to influential views that many skills are performed largely automatically. Cognitive control is focused on strategic aspects of performance, and plays a greater role as difficulty increases. We offer an analysis of various forms of skill experience and show that the theory provides a better explanation for the full set of these experiences than automatic theories. We further (...)
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  • Metacognition and Endorsement.Kourken Michaelian - 2012 - Mind and Language 27 (3):284-307.
    Real agents rely, when forming their beliefs, on imperfect informational sources (sources which deliver, even under normal conditions of operation, both accurate and inaccurate information). They therefore face the ‘endorsement problem’: how can beliefs produced by endorsing information received from imperfect sources be formed in an epistemically acceptable manner? Focussing on the case of episodic memory and drawing on empirical work on metamemory, this article argues that metacognition likely plays a crucial role in explaining how agents solve the endorsement problem.
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