How Supererogation Can Save Intrapersonal Permissivism

American Philosophical Quarterly 56 (2):171-186 (2019)
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Abstract

Rationality is intrapersonally permissive just in case there are multiple doxastic states that one agent may be rational in holding at a given time, given some body of evidence. One way for intrapersonal permissivism to be true is if there are epistemic supererogatory beliefsā€”beliefs that go beyond the call of epistemic duty. Despite this, there has been almost no discussion of epistemic supererogation in the permissivism literature. This paper shows that this is a mistake. It does this by arguing that the most popular ways of responding to one of the major obstacles to any intrapersonally permissive all fall prey to the same problem. This problem is most naturally solved by positing a category of epistemically supererogatory belief. So intrapersonal epistemic permissivists should embrace epistemic supererogation.

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Han Li
Rutgers University - Camden

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