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Friendship and Belief

Philosophical Papers 33 (3):329-351 (2004)

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  1. Can the Demands of Justice Always Be Reconciled with the Demands of Epistemology? Testimonial Injustice and the Prospects of a Normative Clash.Sanford C. Goldberg - 2021 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 29 (4):537-558.
    ABSTRACT In this paper I argue that there are possible cases in which the demands of justice and the norms of epistemology cannot be simultaneously satisfied. I will bring out these normative clashes in terms of the now-familiar phenomenon of testimonial injustice. While the resulting argument is very much in the spirit of two other sorts of argument that have received sustained attention recently – arguments alleging epistemic partiality in friendship, and arguments that motivate the hypothesis of moral encroachment on (...)
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  • Friendship and Epistemic Norms.Jason Kawall - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 165 (2):349-370.
    Simon Keller and Sarah Stroud have both argued that the demands of being a good friend can conflict with the demands of standard epistemic norms. Intuitively, good friends will tend to seek favorable interpretations of their friends’ behaviors, interpretations that they would not apply to strangers; as such they seem prone to form unjustified beliefs. I argue that there is no such clash of norms. In particular, I argue that friendship does not require us to form beliefs about our friends (...)
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  • Doxastic Wronging.Rima Basu & Mark Schroeder - 2019 - In Brian Kim & Matthew McGrath (eds.), Pragmatic Encroachment in Epistemology. Routledge. pp. 181-205.
    In the Book of Common Prayer’s Rite II version of the Eucharist, the congregation confesses, “we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed”. According to this confession we wrong God not just by what we do and what we say, but also by what we think. The idea that we can wrong someone not just by what we do, but by what think or what we believe, is a natural one. It is the kind of wrong we feel (...)
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  • Three Varieties of Faith.Ryan Preston-Roedder - 2018 - Philosophical Topics 46 (1):173-199.
    Secular moral philosophy has devoted little attention to the nature and significance of faith. Perhaps this is unsurprising. The significance of faith is typically thought to depend on the truth of theism, and so it may seem that a careful study of faith has little to offer non-religious philosophy. But I argue that, whether or not theism holds, certain kinds of faith are centrally important virtues, that is, character traits that are morally admirable or admirable from some broader perspective of (...)
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  • Wouldn't It Be Nice: Enticing Reasons for Love.N. L. Engel-Hawbecker - forthcoming - In Simon Cushing (ed.), New Philosophical Essays on Love and Loving. Palgrave Macmillan.
    A central debate in the philosophy of love is whether people can love one another for good reasons. Reasons for love seem to help us sympathetically understand and evaluate love or even to count as loving at all. But it can seem that if reasons for love existed, they could require forms of love (like rampant infidelity) presumably illicit. It might seem that only some form of wishful thinking would lead us to believe reasons for love could never do this. (...)
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  • The Ethics of Expectations.Rima Basu - manuscript
    This paper asks two questions about the ethics of expectations: one about the nature of expectations, and one about the wrongs of expectations. Expectations involve a rich constellation of attitudes ranging from beliefs to also include imaginings, hopes, fears, and dreams. As a result, it would be a mistake to treat expectation as merely a theoretical, practical, or evaluative attitude. Sometimes expectations are predictive, like your expectation of rain tomorrow, sometimes prescriptive, like the expectation that your students will do the (...)
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  • Against Epistemic Partiality in Friendship: Value-Reflecting Reasons.Sanford Goldberg - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (8):2221-2242.
    It has been alleged that the demands of friendship conflict with the norms of epistemology—in particular, that there are cases in which the moral demands of friendship would require one to give a friend the benefit of the doubt, and thereby come to believe something in violation of ordinary epistemic standards on justified or responsible belief :329–351, 2004; Stroud in Ethics 116:498–524, 2006; Hazlett in A luxury of the understanding: on the value of true belief, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2013). (...)
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  • A Lover’s Shame.Ward E. Jones - 2012 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 15 (5):615-630.
    Shame is one of the more painful consequences of loving someone; my beloved’s doing something immoral can cause me to be ashamed of her. The guiding thought behind this paper is that explaining this phenomenon can tell us something about what it means to love. The phenomenon of beloved-induced shame has been largely neglected by philosophers working on shame, most of whom conceive of shame as being a reflexive attitude. Bennett Helm has recently suggested that in order to account for (...)
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  • Pascal, Pascalberg, and Friends.Samuel Lebens - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 87 (1):109-130.
    Pascal’s wager has to face the many gods objection. The wager goes wrong when it asks us to chose between Christianity and atheism, as if there are no other options. Some have argued that we’re entitled to dismiss exotic, bizarre, or subjectively unappealing religions from the scope of the wager. But they have provided no satisfying justification for such a radical wager-saving dispensation. This paper fills that dialectical gap. It argues that some agents are blameless or even praiseworthy for ignoring (...)
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  • Believing the Best: On Doxastic Partiality in Friendship.Lindsay Crawford - 2019 - Synthese 196 (4):1575-1593.
    Some philosophers argue that friendship can normatively require us to have certain beliefs about our friends that epistemic norms would prohibit. On this view, we ought to exhibit some degree of doxastic partiality toward our friends, by having certain generally favorable beliefs and doxastic dispositions that concern our friends that we would not have concerning relevantly similar non-friends. Can friendship genuinely make these normative demands on our beliefs, in ways that would conflict with what we epistemically ought to believe? On (...)
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  • How Aristotelians Can Make Faith a Virtue.Anne Jeffrey - 2017 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 20 (2):393-409.
    Neo-Aristotelian virtue ethics identifies the virtues with the traits the fully virtuous person possesses. Further, it depicts the fully virtuous person as having all the cognitive perfections necessary for possessing practical wisdom. This paper argues that these two theses disqualify faith as trust, as construed on contemporary accounts of faith, as a virtue. For faith’s role as a virtue depends on limitations of its possessor that are incompatible with the psychological profile of the fully virtuous person on the neo-Aristotelian picture. (...)
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  • Giving the Benefit of the Doubt.Paul Faulkner - 2018 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 26 (2):139-155.
    Faced with evidence that what a person said is false, we can nevertheless trust them and so believe what they say – choosing to give them the benefit of the doubt. This is particularly notable when the person is a friend, or someone we are close to. Towards such persons, we demonstrate a remarkable epistemic partiality. We can trust, and so believe, our friends even when the balance of the evidence suggests that what they tell us is false. And insofar (...)
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  • Ethics and Epistemic Hopelessness.James Fritz - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    This paper investigates the ethics of regarding others as epistemically hopeless. To regard a person as epistemically hopeless with respect to p is, roughly, to regard her as unable to see the truth of p through rational means. Regarding a person as epistemically hopeless is a stance that has surprising and nuanced moral implications. It can be a sign of respect, and it can also be a way of giving up on someone. Whether it is morally problematic to take up (...)
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  • Disagreement and the Value of Self-Trust.Robert Pasnau - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (9):2315-2339.
    Controversy over the epistemology of disagreement endures because there is an unnoticed factor at work: the intrinsic value we give to self-trust. Even if there are many instances of disagreement where, from a strictly epistemic or rational point of view, we ought to suspend belief, there are other values at work that influence our all-things considered judgments about what we ought to believe. Hence those who would give equal-weight to both sides in many cases of disagreement may be right, from (...)
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  • Believing for Practical Reasons.Susanna Rinard - 2018 - Noûs (4):763-784.
    Some prominent evidentialists argue that practical considerations cannot be normative reasons for belief because they can’t be motivating reasons for belief. Existing pragmatist responses turn out to depend on the assumption that it’s possible to believe in the absence of evidence. The evidentialist may deny this, at which point the debate ends in an impasse. I propose a new strategy for the pragmatist. This involves conceding that belief in the absence of evidence is impossible. We then argue that evidence can (...)
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  • There is No Such Thing as Doxastic Wrongdoing.David Enoch & Levi Spectre - forthcoming - Philosophical Perspectives.
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  • A Feminist Interpretation of Hume on Testimony.Dan O'Brien - 2010 - Hypatia 25 (3):632 - 652.
    Hume is usually taken to have an evidentialist account of testimonial belief: one is justified in believing what someone says if one has empincal evidence that they have been reliable in the past. This account is impartialist: such evidence is required no matter who the person is, or what refotions she may have to you. I, however, argue that Hume has another account of testimony, one grounded in sympathy. This account is partialist, in that empincal evidence is not required in (...)
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  • It’s Friendship, Jim, but Not as We Know It: A Degrees-of-Friendship View of Human–Robot Friendships.Helen Ryland - 2021 - Minds and Machines 31 (3):377-393.
    This article argues in defence of human–robot friendship. I begin by outlining the standard Aristotelian view of friendship, according to which there are certain necessary conditions which x must meet in order to ‘be a friend’. I explain how the current literature typically uses this Aristotelian view to object to human–robot friendships on theoretical and ethical grounds. Theoretically, a robot cannot be our friend because it cannot meet the requisite necessary conditions for friendship. Ethically, human–robot friendships are wrong because they (...)
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  • What is Friendship?Uri D. Leibowitz - 2018 - Disputatio 10 (49):97-117.
    The paper identifies a distinctive feature of friendship. Friendship, it is argued, is a relationship between two people in which each participant values the other and successfully communicates this fact to the other. This feature of friendship, it is claimed, explains why friendship plays a key role in human happiness, why it is praised by philosophers, poets, and novelists, and why we all seek friends. Although the characterization of friendship proposed here differs from other views in the literature, it is (...)
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  • Academic Friendship in Dark Times.Penny Enslin & Nicki Hedge - 2019 - Ethics and Education 14 (4):383-398.
    ABSTRACTBringing philosophical work on friendship to bear on the growing body of critique about the state of the neoliberal academy, this paper defends academic friendship. Initially a vignette illustrates the key features of academic friendship and the multiple demands on academics to account for themselves in the neoliberal university. We locate academic friendship in the context of that neoliberal university before discussing managerialist threats to this relationship. We indicate how the performativity-driven working environment contrasts radically and unfavourably with some defining (...)
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  • The Guise of the Good and the Problem of Partiality.Allan Hazlett - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (6):851-872.
    According to the guise of the good thesis, we desire things under the ‘guise of the good.’ Here I sympathetically articulate a generic formulation of the guise of the good thesis, and addre...
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  • Against the New Evidentialists.Susanna Rinard - 2015 - Philosophical Issues 25 (1):208-223.
    Evidentialists and Pragmatists about reasons for belief have long been in dialectical stalemate. However, recent times have seen a new wave of Evidentialists who claim to provide arguments for their view which should be persuasive even to someone initially inclined toward Pragmatism. This paper reveals a central flaw in this New Evidentialist project: their arguments rely on overly demanding necessary conditions for a consideration to count as a genuine reason. In particular, their conditions rule out the possibility of pragmatic reasons (...)
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  • Virtue and Salience.Richard Yetter Chappell & Helen Yetter-Chappell - 2016 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 94 (3):449-463.
    This paper explores two ways in which evaluations of an agent's character as virtuous or vicious are properly influenced by what the agent finds salient or attention-grabbing. First, we argue that ignoring salient needs reveals a greater deficit of benevolent motivation in the agent, and hence renders the agent more blameworthy. We use this fact to help explain our ordinary intuition that failing to give to famine relief is in some sense less bad than failing to help a child who (...)
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  • The Role of Epistemic Virtue in the Realization of Basic Goods.Baril Anne - 2016 - Episteme 13 (4):379-395.
    ABSTRACTIn this paper, I argue that, contrary to popular opinion, there is good reason to think that the qualities that make people good reasoners also make them better off. I will focus specifically on epistemic virtue: roughly, the kind of character in virtue of which one is excellently oriented towards epistemic goods. I propose that epistemic virtue is importantly implicated in the realization of some of the goods that are widely believed to be instrumental to, or even constitutive of, well-being. (...)
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  • Anxious Feelings, Anxious Friends: On Anxiety and Friendship.Troy Jollimore - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):14709-14724.
    Although anxiety is frequently seen as a predominantly negative phenomenon, some recent researchers have argued that it plays an important positive function, serving as an alert to warn agents of possible problems or threats. I argue that not only can one’s own, first-personal anxiety perform this function; because it is possible for others—in particular, one’s friends—to feel anxious on one’s behalf, their anxious feelings can sometimes play the same role in our functioning, and make similar contributions to our well-being. I (...)
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  • Friendship and Bias: Ethical and Epistemic Considerations.Sheila Lintott - 2015 - Journal of Social Philosophy 46 (3):318-339.
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  • Does Moral Ignorance Exculpate?Elizabeth Harman - 2011 - Ratio 24 (4):443-468.
    Non-moral ignorance can exculpate: if Anne spoons cyanide into Bill's coffee, but thinks she is spooning sugar, then Anne may be blameless for poisoning Bill. Gideon Rosen argues that moral ignorance can also exculpate: if one does not believe that one's action is wrong, and one has not mismanaged one's beliefs, then one is blameless for acting wrongly. On his view, many apparently blameworthy actions are blameless. I discuss several objections to Rosen. I then propose an alternative view on which (...)
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  • Not Skeptical Theism, but Trusting Theism.John McClellan - 2016 - Southwest Philosophy Review 32 (1):233-244.
    Over the last three decades, a vast literature has amassed debating the merits of skeptical theism, and it is easy to get the sense that the rationality of theism itself depends crucially on the viability of the skeptical theist response. I will argue that this is mistaken, as there is no need for theists to maintain that non-theists are wrong to treat inscrutable evils as compelling evidence for atheism. I will show that theists instead need only take themselves to have (...)
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  • Belief in a Fallen World.Robert Pasnau - 2018 - Res Philosophica 95 (3):531-559.
    In an ideal epistemic world, our beliefs would correspond to our evidence, and our evidence would be bountiful. In the world we live in, however, if we wish to live meaningful lives, other epistemic strategies are necessary. Here I attempt to work out, systematically, the ways in which evidentialism fails us as a guide to belief. This is so preeminently for lives of a religious character, but the point applies more broadly.
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  • Inquiry and the Epistemic.David Thorstad - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (9):2913-2928.
    The zetetic turn in epistemology raises three questions about epistemic and zetetic norms. First, there is the relationship question: what is the relationship between epistemic and zetetic norms? Are some epistemic norms zetetic norms, or are epistemic and zetetic norms distinct? Second, there is the tension question: are traditional epistemic norms in tension with plausible zetetic norms? Third, there is the reaction question: how should theorists react to a tension between epistemic and zetetic norms? Drawing on an analogy to practical (...)
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  • Proselytism as Epistemic Violence: A Jewish Approach to the Ethics of Religious Persuasion.Samuel Lebens - 2021 - The Monist 104 (3):376-392.
    The purpose of this paper is two-fold: to provide a philosophical justification for the counterintuitive attitude that Judaism seems to have towards proselytism; and to extend the case so as to create a general argument, applicable to all religions, against many forms of proselytism.
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  • Believing in Others.Sarah K. Paul & Jennifer M. Morton - 2018 - Philosophical Topics 46 (1):75-95.
    Suppose some person 'A' sets out to accomplish a difficult, long-term goal such as writing a passable Ph.D. thesis. What should you believe about whether A will succeed? The default answer is that you should believe whatever the total accessible evidence concerning A's abilities, circumstances, capacity for self-discipline, and so forth supports. But could it be that what you should believe depends in part on the relationship you have with A? We argue that it does, in the case where A (...)
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  • Morality Justifies Motivated Reasoning in the Folk Ethics of Belief.Corey Cusimano & Tania Lombrozo - forthcoming - Cognition:104513.
    When faced with a dilemma between believing what is supported by an impartial assessment of the evidence (e.g., that one's friend is guilty of a crime) and believing what would better fulfill a moral obligation (e.g., that the friend is innocent), people often believe in line with the latter. But is this how people think beliefs ought to be formed? We addressed this question across three studies and found that, across a diverse set of everyday situations, people treat moral considerations (...)
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  • Rational Stability Under Pragmatic Encroachment.Mark Schroeder - 2018 - Episteme 15 (3):297-312.
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  • On the Epistemic Significance of Practical Reasons to Inquire.Sanford C. Goldberg - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):1641-1658.
    In this paper I explore the epistemic significance of practical reasons to inquire. I have in mind the range of practical reasons one might have to do such things as collect evidence, consult with various sources, employ certain methods or techniques, double-check one’s answer to a question, etc. After expanding the diet of examples in which subjects have such reasons, I appeal to features of these sorts of reason in order to question the motivation for pragmatic encroachment in epistemology. Once (...)
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  • Belief, Credence, and Moral Encroachment.Elizabeth Jackson & James Fritz - 2021 - Synthese 199 (1-2):1387–1408.
    Radical moral encroachment is the view that belief itself is morally evaluable, and that some moral properties of belief itself make a difference to epistemic rationality. To date, almost all proponents of radical moral encroachment hold to an asymmetry thesis: the moral encroaches on rational belief, but not on rational credence. In this paper, we argue against the asymmetry thesis; we show that, insofar as one accepts the most prominent arguments for radical moral encroachment on belief, one should likewise accept (...)
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  • The Epistemic Demands of Friendship: Friendship as Inherently Knowledge-Involving.Cathy Mason - 2020 - Synthese 199 (1-2):2439-2455.
    Many recent philosophers have been tempted by epistemic partialism. They hold that epistemic norms and those of friendship constitutively conflict. In this paper, I suggest that underpinning this claim is the assumption that friendship is not an epistemically rich state, an assumption that even opponents of epistemic partiality have not questioned. I argue that there is good reason to question this assumption, and instead regard friendship as essentially involving knowledge of the other. If we accept this account of friendship, the (...)
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  • A Tale of Two Doctrines: Moral Encroachment and Doxastic Wronging.Rima Basu - 2021 - In Jennifer Lackey (ed.), Applied Epistemology. Oxford University Press. pp. 99-118.
    In this paper, I argue that morality might bear on belief in at least two conceptually distinct ways. The first is that morality might bear on belief by bearing on questions of justification. The claim that it does is the doctrine of moral encroachment. The second, is that morality might bear on belief given the central role belief plays in mediating and thereby constituting our relationships with one another. The claim that it does is the doctrine of doxastic wronging. Though (...)
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  • The Non-Remedial Value of Dependence on Moral Testimony.Paddy McShane - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (3):629-647.
    In this paper I defend dependence on moral testimony. I show how going defenses of dependence on moral testimony have portrayed it as second-best by centering on how and why it is an important means to overcoming our defects. I argue that once we consider the pervasiveness of moral testimony in the context of intimate relationships, we can see that the value of dependence on moral testimony goes beyond this: it is not only our flaws and limitations that justify our (...)
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  • Epistemology Personalized.Matthew A. Benton - 2017 - Philosophical Quarterly 67 (269):813-834.
    Recent epistemology has focused almost exclusively on propositional knowledge. This paper considers an underexplored area of epistemology, namely knowledge of persons: if propositional knowledge is a state of mind, consisting in a subject's attitude to a (true) proposition, the account developed here thinks of interpersonal knowledge as a state of minds, involving a subject's attitude to another (existing) subject. This kind of knowledge is distinct from propositional knowledge, but it exhibits a gradability characteristic of context-sensitivity, and admits of shifty thresholds. (...)
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  • Ingroup Attitude: A Reliance-Based Analysis.Xin Zhang - unknown
    People as group members tend to exhibit a partial attitude to either conform to the dominant group view or form beliefs—such as climate change denial and religious belief—based on other ingroup members’ testimony when the evidence for such a belief is insufficient. Philosophers have conceptualized this phenomenon of ingroup attitudes in terms of belief. In this paper, I argue that reliance, a cognitive attitude that is goal-oriented and primarily regulated by pragmatic concerns, is more fitting to illuminate cases of ingroup (...)
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  • Epistemically Flawless False Beliefs.Kate Nolfi - 2020 - Synthese 198 (12):11291-11309.
    A starting point for the sort of alethic epistemological approach that dominates both historical and contemporary western philosophy is that epistemic norms, standards, or ideals are to be characterized by appeal to some kind of substantively normative relationship between belief and truth. Accordingly, the alethic epistemologist maintains that false beliefs are necessarily defective, imperfect, or flawed, at least from the epistemic perspective. In this paper, I develop an action-oriented alternative to the alethic approach, an alternative that is inspired by and (...)
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  • On the Special Insult of Refusing Testimony.Allan Hazlett - 2017 - Philosophical Explorations 20 (sup1):37-51.
    In this paper, I defend the claim, made by G. E. M. Anscombe and J. L. Austin, that you can insult someone by refusing her testimony. I argue that refusing someone’s testimony can manifest doubt about her credibility, which in the relevant cases is offensive to her, given that she presupposed her credibility by telling what she did. I conclude by sketching three applications of my conclusion: to the issue of valuable false belief, to the issue of testimonial injustice, and (...)
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  • Distinctive Duress.Craig K. Agule - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (4):1007-1026.
    Duress is a defense in both law and morality. The bank teller who provides an armed robber with the bank vault combination, the innocent suspect who fabricates a story after hours of interrogation, the Good Samaritan who breaks into a private cabin in the woods to save a stranded hiker, and the father who drives at high speed to rush his injured child to the hospital—in deciding how to respond to agents like these, we should take into account that they (...)
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  • Against the Alleged Insufficiency of Statistical Evidence.Sam Fox Krauss - 2020 - Florida State University Law Review 47:801-825.
    Over almost a half-century, evidence law scholars and philosophers have contended with what have come to be called the “Proof Paradoxes.” In brief, the following sort of paradox arises: Factfinders in criminal and civil trials are charged with reaching a verdict if the evidence presented meets a particular standard of proof—beyond a reasonable doubt, in criminal cases, and preponderance of the evidence, in civil trials. It seems that purely statistical evidence can suffice for just such a level of certainty in (...)
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  • Regrettable Beliefs.Mica Rapstine - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 178 (7):2169-2190.
    In the flurry of recent exchanges between defenders of moral encroachment and their critics, some of the finer details of particular encroachment accounts have only begun to receive critical attention. This is especially true concerning accounts of the putative wrong-making features of the beliefs to which defenders of moral encroachment draw our attention. Here I attempt to help move this part of the discussion forward by critically engaging two leading accounts. These come from Mark Schroeder and Rima Basu, respectively. The (...)
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  • Bias and Interpersonal Skepticism.Robert Pasnau - forthcoming - Noûs.
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  • Anti‐Reductionism and Expected Trust.Sanford C. Goldberg - 2019 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 100 (4):952-970.
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  • On Having Bad Persons as Friends.Jessica Isserow - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (12):3099-3116.
    Intuitively, one who counts a morally bad person as a friend has gone wrong somewhere. But it is far from obvious where exactly they have gone astray. Perhaps in cultivating a friendship with a bad person, one extends to them certain goods that they do not deserve. Or perhaps the failure lies elsewhere; one may be an abettor to moral transgressions. Yet another option is to identify the mistake as a species of imprudence—one may take on great personal risk in (...)
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  • Varieties of Moral Encroachment.Renée Jorgensen Bolinger - 2020 - Philosophical Perspectives 34 (1):5-26.
    Several authors have recently suggested that moral factors and norms `encroach' on the epistemic, and because of salient parallels to pragmatic encroachment views in epistemology, these suggestions have been dubbed `moral encroachment views'. This paper distinguishes between variants of the moral encroachment thesis, pointing out how they address different problems, are motivated by different considerations, and are not all subject to the same objections. It also explores how the family of moral encroachment views compare to classical pragmatic encroachment accounts.
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