20 found
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  1. Being neutral: Agnosticism, inquiry and the suspension of judgment.Matthew McGrath - 2021 - Noûs 55 (2):463-484.
    Epistemologists often claim that in addition to belief and disbelief there is a third, neutral, doxastic attitude. Various terms are used: ‘suspending judgment’, ‘withholding’, ‘agnosticism’. It is also common to claim that the factors relevant to the justification of these attitudes are epistemic in the narrow sense of being factors that bear on the strength or weakness of one’s epistemic position with respect to the target proposition. This paper addresses two challenges to such traditionalism about doxastic attitudes. The first concerns (...)
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  2. Looks and Perceptual Justification.Matthew McGrath - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 96 (1):110-133.
    Imagine I hold up a Granny Smith apple for all to see. You would thereby gain justified beliefs that it was green, that it was apple, and that it is a Granny Smith apple. Under classical foundationalism, such simple visual beliefs are mediately justified on the basis of reasons concerning your experience. Under dogmatism, some or all of these beliefs are justified immediately by your experience and not by reasons you possess. This paper argues for what I call the looks (...)
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  3. Phenomenal Conservatism and Cognitive Penetration: The Bad Basis Counterexamples.Matthew McGrath - 2013 - In Chris Tucker (ed.), Seemings and Justification: New Essays on Dogmatism and Phenomenal Conservatism. New York: Oxford University Press USA. pp. 225–247.
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  4. Having False Reasons.Juan Comesaña & Matthew McGrath - 2014 - In Clayton Littlejohn & John Turri (eds.), Epistemic Norms. Oxford University Press. pp. 59-80.
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  5. Knowing what things look like.Matthew McGrath - 2017 - Philosophical Review 126 (1):1-41.
    Walking through the supermarket, I see the avocados. I know they are avocados. Similarly, if you see a pumpkin on my office desk, you can know it’s a pumpkin from its looks. The phenomenology in such cases is that of “just seeing” that such and such. This phenomenology might suggest that the knowledge gained is immediate. This paper argues, to the contrary, that in these target cases, the knowledge is mediate, depending as it does on one’s knowledge of what the (...)
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  6. Epistemic Norms for Waiting.Matthew McGrath - 2021 - Philosophical Topics 49 (2):173-201.
    Although belief formation is sometimes automatic, there are occasions in which we have the power to put it off, to wait on belief-formation. Waiting in this sense seems assessable by epistemic norms. This paper explores what form such norms might take: the nature and their content. A key question is how these norms relate to epistemic norms on belief-formation: could we have cases in which one ought to believe that p but also ought to wait on forming a belief on (...)
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  7. Perceptual reasons.Juan Comesana & Matthew McGrath - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (4):991-1006.
    The two main theories of perceptual reasons in contemporary epistemology can be called Phenomenalism and Factualism. According to Phenomenalism, perceptual reasons are facts about experiences conceived of as phenomenal states, i.e., states individuated by phenomenal character, by what it’s like to be in them. According to Factualism, perceptual reasons are instead facts about the external objects perceived. The main problem with Factualism is that it struggles with bad cases: cases where perceived objects are not what they appear or where there (...)
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  8. Memory and epistemic conservatism.Matthew McGrath - 2007 - Synthese 157 (1):1-24.
    Much of the plausibility of epistemic conservatism derives from its prospects of explaining our rationality in holding memory beliefs. In the first two parts of this paper, I argue for the inadequacy of the two standard approaches to the epistemology of memory beliefs, preservationism and evidentialism. In the third, I point out the advantages of the conservative approach and consider how well conservatism survives three of the strongest objections against it. Conservatism does survive, I claim, but only if qualified in (...)
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  9. Clarifying Pragmatic Encroachment: A Reply to Charity Anderson and John Hawthorne on Knowledge, Practical Adequacy, and Stakes.Jeremy Fanti & Matthew McGrath - 2019 - Oxford Studies in Epistemology 6.
    This chapter addresses concerns that pragmatic encroachers are committed to problematic knowledge variance. It first replies to Charity Anderson and John Hawthorne’s new putative problem cases, which purport to show that pragmatic encroachment is committed to problematic variations in knowledge depending on what choices are available to the potential knower. It argues that the new cases do not provide any new reasons to be concerned about the pragmatic encroacher’s commitment to knowledge-variance. The chapter further argues that concerns about knowledge-variance are (...)
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  10. Pragmatic encroachment: It's not just about knowledge.Jeremy Fantl & Matthew McGrath - 2012 - Episteme 9 (1):27-42.
    There is pragmatic encroachment on some epistemic status just in case whether a proposition has that status for a subject depends not only on the subject's epistemic position with respect to the proposition, but also on features of the subject's non-epistemic, practical environment. Discussions of pragmatic encroachment usually focus on knowledge. Here we argue that, barring infallibilism, there is pragmatic encroachment on what is arguably a more fundamental epistemic status – the status a proposition has when it is warranted enough (...)
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  11. Siegel and the impact for epistemological internalism.Matthew McGrath - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (3):723-732.
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  12. Two purposes of knowledge-attribution and the contextualism debate.Matthew McGrath - 2015 - In David K. Henderson & John Greco (eds.), Epistemic Evaluation: Purposeful Epistemology. Oxford: Oxford University Press UK.
    In this chapter, we follow Edward Craig?s advice: ask what the concept of knowledge does for us and use our findings as clues about its application conditions. What a concept does for us is a matter of what we can do with it, and what we do with concepts is deploy them in thought and language. So, we will examine the purposes we have in attributing knowledge. This chapter examines two such purposes, agent evaluation and informant-suggestion, and brings the results (...)
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  13. Knowing What Things Look Like: A reply to Shieber.Matthew McGrath - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    In ‘Knowing What Things Look Like,’ I argued against the immediacy of visual objectual knowledge, i.e. visual knowledge that a thing is F, for an object category F, such as avocado, tree, desk, etc. Joseph Shieber proposes a challenging dilemma in reply. Either knowing what Fs look like requires having concepts such as looks or it doesn’t. Either way my argument fails. If knowing what Fs look like doesn’t require having such concepts, then he claims we can give an immediacy-friendly (...)
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  14. Undercutting Defeat: When it Happens and Some Implications for Epistemology.Matthew McGrath - 2021 - In Jessica Brown & Mona Simion (eds.), Reasons, Justification, and Defeat. Oxford Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 201-222.
    Although there is disagreement about the details, John Pollock’s framework for defeat is now part of the received wisdom in analytic epistemology. Recently, however, cracks have appeared in the consensus, particularly on the understanding of undercutting defeat. While not questioning the existence of undercutting defeat, Scott Sturgeon argues that undercutting defeat operates differently from rebutting. Unlike the latter, undercutting defeat, Sturgeon claims, occurs only in conjunction with certain higher-order contributions, i.e., with beliefs about the basis on which one does or (...)
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  15. Kornblith on Epistemic Normativity.Matthew McGrath - forthcoming - In Luis Oliveira & Joshua DiPaolo (eds.), Kornblith and His Critics. Wiley-Blackwell.
    Kornblith’s “Epistemic Normativity” is a classic in the now voluminous literature on the source of epistemic normativity. His account is as simple as it is bold: the source is desire, not a desire for true belief, or knowledge, but any set of desires. No matter what desires you have, so long as you are a being of a kind that employs beliefs in cost-benefit analysis, certain sorts of truth-centered epistemic norms will have normative force for you. We can distinguish two (...)
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  16. Radical Knowledge Minimalism.Jeremy Fantl & Matthew McGrath - 2023 - Logos and Episteme 14 (2):223-227.
    We argue that knowledge doesn‘t require any of truth, justification, or belief. This is so for four primary reasons. First, each of the three conditions has been subject to convincing counterexamples. In addition, the resultant account explains the value of knowledge, manifests important theoretical virtues (in particular, simplicity), and avoids commitment to skepticism.
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  17. Nonsubjectivism About How Things Seem.Matthew Mcgrath - 2023 - In Kevin McCain, Scott Stapleford & Matthias Steup (eds.), Seemings: New Arguments, New Angles. New York, NY: Routledge. pp. 38–53.
    We regularly appeal to claims of the form it seems that p in defense of a claim p. When we do so, we typically take it seems that p to be a reason for thinking that p but also a reason that “gets at” a relevant body of facts and its support for p. Other things being equal, we should want to vindicate our ordinary beliefs on this matter. We should want to vindicate the claim that facts about things seeming (...)
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  18. Is Suspension of Judgment a Question-Directed Attitude? No, not Really (3rd edition).Matthew McGrath - 2013 - In Matthias Steup & John Turri (eds.), Contemporary Debates in Epistemology. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: Blackwell.
    In what follows, I’ll discuss several approaches to suspension. As we’ll see, the issue of whether and in what sense(s) suspension is *question-directed* is important to developing an adequate account. I will argue that suspension isn’t question-directed in the way that curiosity, wondering, and inquiry are. The most promising approach, in my view, takes suspension to be an agential matter; it involves the will. As we’ll see, this view makes sense of a lot of familiar facts about suspension, and it (...)
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  19. A limitation on agency in judgment.Matthew McGrath - 2022 - Synthese 200 (2):1-21.
    To many, judgment has seemed a locus of cognitive agency, a kind of cognitive mental act. In one minimal sense, judgment is something one does. I consider whether judgment is more robustly agential: is it a kind of action done with an aim? The most attractive version of this sort of position takes judging that p to affirming that p with an alethic aim, an aim such as affirming truly. I argue that such views have unacceptable consequences. Acts done with (...)
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  20. Sosa on epistemic value: a Kantian obstacle.Matthew McGrath - 2018 - Synthese 197 (12):5287-5300.
    In recent work, Sosa proposes a comprehensive account of epistemic value based on an axiology for attempts. According to this axiology, an attempt is better if it succeeds, better still if it is apt (i.e., succeeds through competence), and best if it is fully apt, (i.e., guided to aptness by apt beliefs that it would be apt). Beliefs are understood as attempts aiming at the truth. Thus, a belief is better if true, better still if apt, and best if fully (...)
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