David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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European Journal of Philosophy 19 (3):387-407 (2011)
Abstract: It is generally accepted that skeptical scenarios must be possible to raise legitimate skeptical doubt. I argue that if the possibility in question is supposed to be genuine metaphysical possibility, the skeptic's reasoning does not straightforwardly succeed. I first motivate the metaphysical possibility requirement on skeptical scenarios: it's a plausible position that several authors accept and that a family of prominent views—sensitivity, safety, relevant alternatives—are committed to. I argue that plausible constraints in modal epistemology show that justification for believing that certain global skeptical scenarios are metaphysically possible rests on some justified beliefs about the external world, and that this undermines the skeptical argument. While there may still be local skeptical challenges, skeptics cannot appeal to the metaphysical possibility of skeptical scenarios to generate global external world skepticism
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