Sosa, Certainty and the Problem of the Criterion

Philosophical Papers 40 (3):287-304 (2011)
Abstract
Abstract In Reflective Knowledge, Ernest Sosa continues his detailed and intriguing defense of his two level account of knowledge that recognizes both animal and reflective knowledge. The latter more impressive type of knowledge requires a coherent positive epistemic perspective defending the reliability of a source of belief. Viewing Sosa's discussion from the through the lens provided by R.M. Chisholm's treatments of the problem of the criterion, I worry that Sosa's approach is too far in the methodist direction. As a result, it is in danger of being unable to allow that paradigm examples of certain beliefs are indeed certain, e.g., the beliefs normal adults form in simple arithmetic truths under normal circumstances. I urge an approach closer to particularism that grants more weight to such paradigm particular cases. I also suggest that such an approach might actually align well with Sosa's coherentist sympathies
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