Favoring, Likelihoodism, and Bayesianism [Book Review]
Graduate studies at Western
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 83 (3):666-672 (2011)
|Abstract||This (brief) note is about the (evidential) “favoring” relation. Pre-theoretically, favoring is a three-place (epistemic) relation, between an evidential proposition E and two hypotheses H1 and H2. Favoring relations are expressed via locutions of the form: E favors H1 over H2. Strictly speaking, favoring should really be thought of as a four-place relation, between E, H1, H2, and a corpus of background evidence K. But, for present purposes (which won't address issues involving K), I will suppress the background corpus, so as to simplify our discussion. Moreover, the favoring relation is meant to be a propositional epistemic relation, as opposed to a doxastic epistemic relation. That is, the favoring relation is not meant to be restricted to bodies of evidence that are possessed (as evidence) by some actual agent(s), or to hypotheses that are (in fact) entertained by some actual agent(s). In this sense, favoring is analogous to the relation of propositional justification — as opposed to doxastic justification (Conee 1980). In order to facilitate a comparison of Likelihoodist vs Bayesian explications of favoring, I will presuppose the following bridge principle, linking favoring and evidential support: • E favors H1 over H2 iff E supports H1 more strongly than E supports H2.1 Finally, I will only be discussing instances of the favoring relation involving contingent, empirical claims. So, it is to be understood that “favoring” will not apply if any of E, H1, or H2 are non-contingent (and/or non-empirical). With this background in place, we're ready to begin|
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