Knowledge and reasonableness

Synthese 199:1435-1451 (2020)
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The notion of relevance plays a role in many accounts of knowledge and knowledge ascription. Although use of the notion is well-motivated, theorists struggle to codify relevance. A reasonable person standard of relevance addresses this codification problem, and provides an objective and flexible standard of relevance; however, treating relevance as reasonableness seems to allow practical factors to determine whether one has knowledge or not—so-called “pragmatic encroachment.” I argue that a fuller understanding of reasonableness and of the role of practical factors in the acquisition of knowledge lets us avoid pragmatic encroachment.

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Krista Lawlor
Stanford University


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