Unravelling the Tangled Web: Continuity, Internalism, Non-Uniqueness and Self-Locating Beliefs

In Tamar Szabó Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Oxford Studies in Epistemology: Volume 3. Oxford University Press UK. pp. 86 (2007)
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Abstract

A number of cases involving self-locating beliefs have been discussed in the Bayesian literature. I suggest that many of these cases, such as the sleeping beauty case, are entangled with issues that are independent of self-locating beliefs per se. In light of this, I propose a division of labor: we should address each of these issues separately before we try to provide a comprehensive account of belief updating. By way of example, I sketch some ways of extending Bayesianism in order to accommodate these issues. Then, putting these other issues aside, I sketch some ways of extending Bayesianism in order to accommodate self-locating beliefs. Finally, I propose a constraint on updating rules, the "Learning Principle", which rules out certain kinds of troubling belief changes, and I use this principle to assess some of the available options.

Author's Profile

Christopher J. G. Meacham
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

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