An explanatory challenge for epistemological disjunctivism

Episteme 15 (2):141-153 (2017)
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Epistemological Disjunctivism is a view about paradigm cases of perceptual knowledge. Duncan Pritchard claims that it is particularly well suited to accounting for internalist and externalist intuitions. A number of authors have disputed this claim, arguing that there are problems for Pritchard’s way with internalist intuitions. I share the worry. However, I don’t think it has been expressed as effectively as it can be. My aim in this paper is to present a new way of formulating the worry, in terms of an “explanatory challenge”. The explanatory challenge is a simple, yet powerful and illuminating challenge for Epistemological Disjunctivism. It is illuminating in the sense that it shows us why Epistemological Disjunctivism must take on certain internalistically problematic commitments. A secondary aim of this paper is to examine whether the recently much-discussed distinction between justifications and excuses in epistemology can support an adequate response. I will argue that it cannot.

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Cameron Boult
Brandon University


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