A New Epistemic Argument for Idealism

In Tyron Goldschmidt & Kenneth Pearce (eds.), Idealism: New Essays in Metaphysics. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 17-33 (2018)
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Abstract
Many idealists have thought that realism raises epistemological problems. The worry is that, if it is possible for truths about ordinary objects to outstrip our experiences in the ways that realists typically suppose, we could never be justified in our beliefs about objects. Few contemporary theorists find this argument convincing; philosophers have offered a variety of responses to defend the epistemology of our object judgments under the assumption of realism. But in this paper, I offer a new type of epistemic argument against realism which is immune to the standard responses in the literature. In addition to raising a challenge for realism, the epistemology of our object judgments has implications for how the idealist should develop her own positive metaphysical view. So in the second half of this paper, I discuss how the idealist should understand the dependence between objects and our experiences if she is to secure epistemic advantages over the realist.
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First archival date: 2016-03-14
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