How to (Blind)Spot the Truth: an investigation on actual epistemic value

Erkenntnis:1572-8420 (2021)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
This paper is about the alethic aspect of epistemic rationality. The most common approaches to this aspect are either normative (what a reasoner ought to/may believe?) or evaluative (how rational is a reasoner?), where the evaluative approaches are usually comparative (one reasoner is assessed compared to another). These approaches often present problems with blindspots. For example, ought a reasoner to believe a currently true blindspot? Is she permitted to? Consequently, these approaches often fail in describing a situation of alethic maximality, where a reasoner fulfills all the alethic norms and could be used as a standard of rationality (as they are, in fact, used in some of these approaches). I propose a function α, which accepts a set of beliefs as inputand returns a numeric alethic value. Then I use this function to define a notion of alethic maximality that is satisfiable by finite reasoners (reasoners with cognitive limitations) and does not present problems with blindspots. Function α may also be used in alethic norms and evaluation methods (comparative and non-comparative) that may be applied to finite reasoners and do not present problems with blindspots. A result of this investigation isthat the project of providing purely alethic norms is defective. The use of function α also sheds light on important epistemological issues, such as the lottery and the preface paradoxes, and the principles of clutter avoidance and reflection.
Reprint years
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Upload history
First archival date: 2021-01-18
Latest version: 2 (2021-02-04)
View other versions
Added to PP index

Total views
155 ( #36,715 of 64,211 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
70 ( #9,925 of 64,211 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.