Knowledge of Validity

Noûs 44 (3):403-432 (2010)
Abstract
What accounts for how we know that certain rules of reasoning, such as reasoning by Modus Ponens, are valid? If our knowledge of validity must be based on some reasoning, then we seem to be committed to the legitimacy of rule-circular arguments for validity. This paper raises a new difficulty for the rule-circular account of our knowledge of validity. The source of the problem is that, contrary to traditional wisdom, a universal generalization cannot be inferred just on the basis of reasoning about an arbitrary object. I argue in favor of a more sophisticated constraint on reasoning by universal generalization, one which undermines a rule-circular account of our knowledge of validity
Keywords rule-circular  validity  universal generalization
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    References found in this work BETA
    George Bealer (2000). A Theory of the a Priori. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 81 (1):1–30.
    Max Black (1958). Self-Supporting Inductive Arguments. Journal of Philosophy 55 (17):718-725.
    Paul Boghossian (2003). Blind Reasoning. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 77 (1):225–248.

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