The Empirical Content of the Epistemic Asymmetry

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Abstract
I conduct an empirical analysis of the temporally asymmetric character of our epistemic access to the world by providing an experimental scheme whose results represent the core empirical content of the epistemic asymmetry. I augment this empirical content by formulating a gedanken experiment inspired by a proposal from David Albert. This second experiment cannot be conducted using any technology that is likely to be developed in the foreseeable future, but the expected results help us to state an important constraint on our ability to know the future. Finally, I show that a third experiment concerning precognition, described by Michael Scriven and John Mackie, does not characterize any additional empirical content but does help to illustrate why it is unlikely that any precognition exists.
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Archival date: 2017-08-03
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2010-12-22

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