Revisionary Epistemology

Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 58 (7-8):755-779 (2015)
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What is knowledge? What should knowledge be like? Call an epistemological project that sets out to answer the first question ‘descriptive’ and a project that sets out to answer the second question ‘normative’. If the answers to these two questions don’t coincide—if what knowledge should be like differs from what knowledge is like—there is room for a third project we call ‘revisionary’. A revisionary project starts by arguing that what knowledge should be differs from what knowledge is. It then proposes that we revise our account of knowledge accordingly. Our aim in this paper was to develop a methodology for revisionary projects in epistemology. Put roughly, the thought is that we start by looking at the various things that we expect knowledge to do for us. Once we have a list of the various things we expect knowledge to do for us we have a ‘job description’; a list of tasks we need done, and that we expect knowledge to perform. With the job description in hand, we can ask what knowledge would hav..

Author Profiles

Davide Fassio
Zhejiang University
Robin McKenna
University of Liverpool


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