Perceptual Knowledge, Discrimination, and Closure

Erkenntnis 85 (6):1361-1378 (2020)
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Abstract

Carter and Pritchard (2016) and Pritchard (2010, 2012, 2016) have tried to reconcile the intuition that perceptual knowledge requires only limited discriminatory abilities with the closure principle. To this end, they have introduced two theoretical innovations: a contrast between two ways of introducing error-possibilities and a distinction between discriminating and favoring evidence. I argue that their solution faces the “sufficiency problem”: it is unclear whether the evidence that is normally available to adult humans is sufficient to retain knowledge of the entailing proposition and come to know the entailed proposition. I submit that, on either infallibilist or fallibilist views of evidence, Carter and Pritchard have set the bar for deductive knowledge too low. At the end, I offer an alternative solution. I suggest that the knowledge-retention condition of the closure principle is not satisfied in zebra-like scenarios.

Author's Profile

Santiago Echeverri
National Autonomous University of Mexico

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