Knowledge is Believing Something Because It's True

Episteme 19 (2):178-196 (2022)
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Modalists think that knowledge requires forming your belief in a “modally stable” way: using a method that wouldn't easily go wrong, or using a method that wouldn't have given you this belief had it been false. Recent Modalist projects from Justin Clarke-Doane and Dan Baras defend a principle they call “Modal Security,” roughly: if evidence undermines your belief, then it must give you a reason to doubt the safety or sensitivity of your belief. Another recent Modalist project from Carlotta Pavese and Bob Beddor defends “Modal Virtue Epistemology”: knowledge is a belief that is maximally modally robust across “normal” worlds. We'll offer new objections to these recent Modalist projects. We will then argue for a rival view, Explanationism: knowing something is believing it because it's true. We will show how Explanationism offers a better account of undermining defeaters than Modalism, and a better account of knowledge.

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Tomas Bogardus
Pepperdine University


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