Justification, Ambiguity, and Belief: Comments on McEvoy’s “The internalist counterexample to reliabilism”

Southwest Philosophy Review 21 (2):183-186 (2005)
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Unadorned process reliabilism (hereafter UPR) takes any true belief produced by a reliable process (undefeated by any other reliable process) to count as knowledge. Consequently, according to UPR, to know p, you need not know that you know it. In particular, you need not know that the process by which you formed your belief was reliable; its simply being reliable is enough to make the true belief knowledge. Defenders of UPR are often presented with purported counterexamples describing subjects who have true beliefs resulting from reliable (and undefeated) processes, but whom we do not intuitively take to know the propositions that they believe (call this “the internalist objection”). Mark McEvoy has recently challenged such arguments claiming (1) that the internalist objection against UPR simply begs the question against it, and (2) our intuitions about cases structurally similar to the standard examples characteristic of the internalist objection are actually often in line with UPR. In what follows I’ll argue that the plausibility of (1) depends on McEvoy’s success in establishing (2), but with the level of description provided, (2) seems undermotivated.

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Henry Jackman
York University


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