Indoctrination Anxiety and the Etiology of Belief

Synthese 193 (10):3079-3098 (2016)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
People sometimes try to call others’ beliefs into question by pointing out the contingent causal origins of those beliefs. The significance of such ‘Etiological Challenges’ is a topic that has started attracting attention in epistemology. Current work on this topic aims to show that Etiological Challenges are, at most, only indirectly epistemically significant, insofar as they bring other generic epistemic considerations to the agent’s attention. Against this approach, we argue that Etiological Challenges are epistemically significant in a more direct and more distinctive way. An Etiological Challenge prompts the agent to assess whether her beliefs result from practices of indoctrination, and whether she should reduce confidence in those beliefs, given the anti-reliability of indoctrination as a method of belief-acquisition. Our analysis also draws attention to some of the ways in which epistemic concerns interact with political issues—e.g. relating to epistemic injustice, identity-based discrimination, and segregation—when we’re thinking about the contingent causal origins of our beliefs.
Reprint years
2016
ISBN(s)
PhilPapers/Archive ID
DIPIAA
Upload history
First archival date: 2016-10-17
Latest version: 2 (2020-03-04)
View other versions
Added to PP index
2015-09-25

Total views
430 ( #14,712 of 2,448,517 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
24 ( #27,276 of 2,448,517 )

How can I increase my downloads?

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