Reliabilism and the problem of defeaters

Grazer Philosophische Studien 79 (1):65-76 (2009)
It is widely assumed that justification is defeasible, e.g. that under certain conditions counterevidence removes prior justification of beliefs. In this paper I will first (sect. 1) explain why this feature of justification poses a prima facie problem for reliabilism. I then will try out different reliabilist strategies to deal with the problem. Among them I will discuss conservative strategies (sect. 2), eliminativist stragies (sect. 3) and revisionist strategies (sect. 4). In the final section I will present an improved revisionist approach to defeaters that is able to overcome the main shortcomings of the other approaches.
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