Higher-Order Defeat is Object-Independent

Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (2):248-269 (2018)
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Higher-order defeat occurs when one loses justification for one's beliefs as a result of receiving evidence that those beliefs resulted from a cognitive malfunction. Several philosophers have identified features of higher-order defeat that distinguish it from familiar types of defeat. If higher-order defeat has these features, they are data an account of rational belief must capture. In this article, I identify a new distinguishing feature of higher-order defeat, and I argue that on its own, and in conjunction with the other distinguishing features, it favors an account of higher-order defeat grounded in non-evidential, ‘state-given reasons’ for belief.

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Joshua DiPaolo
California State University, Fullerton


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