The Propagation of Suspension of judgment. Or, should we confer any weight to crucial objections the truth-value of which we are ignorant?

Erkenntnis (forthcoming)
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It is not uncommon in the history of science and philosophy to encounter crucial experiments or crucial objections the truth-value of which we are ignorant, that is, about which we suspend judgment. Should we ignore such objections? Contrary to widespread practice, I show that in and only in some circumstances they should not be ignored, for the epistemically rational doxastic attitude is to suspend judgment also about the hypothesis that the objection targets. In other words, suspension of judgment "propagates" from the crucial objection to the hypothesis. In this paper I study under which conditions this phenomenon occurs, and discuss its significance for the topics of skepticism and scientific realism.
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Archival date: 2022-06-16
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