On the Epistemology of Modal Rationalism: the Main Problems and Their Significance

Logos and Episteme 6 (1):75-94 (2015)
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In this paper, I discuss the main characteristics of the epistemology of modal rationalism by proceeding from the critical investigation of Peacocke’s theory of modality. I build on arguments by Crispin Wright and Sonia Roca-Royes, which are generalised and supplemented by further analysis, in order to show that principle-based accounts have little prospects of succeeding in their task of providing an integrated account of the metaphysics and the epistemology of modality. I argue that it is unlikely that we will able to develop an exhaustive and accurate principle-based account that discriminates objectively between correct and deviant modal knowledge. Even if such an account can be formulated, a non-circular way of justifying its necessity also seems to be out of our reach.
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