David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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International Journal of Philosophical Studies 14 (4):455 – 474 (2006)
In this paper I explore Plato's reasons for his rejection of the so-called standard analysis of knowledge as justified true belief. I argue that Plato held that knowledge is an infallible mental state in which (a) the knowable is present in the knower and (b) the knower is aware of this presence. Accordingly, knowledge (epistm) is non-propositional. Since there are no infallible belief states, the standard analysis, which assumes that knowledge is a type of belief, cannot be correct. In addition, I argue that Plato held that belief (doxa) is only possible for the sort of being capable of knowledge. This is because self-reflexivity is necessary for infallible knowledge and self-reflexivity is only possible if the intellect is immaterial. This capacity for self-reflexivity is also essential for belief, since beliefs are, paradigmatically, not dispositions but self-reflexive mental states.
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