Epistemic Internalism, Justification, and Memory

Logos and Episteme 5 (1):33-62 (2014)
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Abstract

Epistemic internalism, by stressing the indispensability of the subject’s perspective, strikes many as plausible at first blush. However, many people have tended to reject the position because certain kinds of beliefs have been thought to pose special problems for epistemic internalism. For example, internalists tend to hold that so long as a justifier is available to the subject either immediately or upon introspection, it can serve to justify beliefs. Many have thought it obvious that no such view can be correct, as it has been alleged that internalism cannot account for the possibility of the justification of beliefs stored in memory. My aim in this paper is to offer a response that explains how memory justification is possible in a way that is consistent with epistemic internalism and an awareness condition on justification. Specifically, I will explore the plausibility of various options open to internalists, including both foundationalist and non-foundationalist approaches to the structure of justification. I intend to show that despite other difficult challenges that epistemic internalism might face, memory belief poses no special problems that the resources of internalism cannot adequately address.

Author's Profile

B. J. C. Madison
United Arab Emirates University

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