Further thoughts on the swamping problem

The Swamping Problem is one of the central problems in the new valuedriven approach to epistemology that has arisen recently. Issues concerning epistemic value, however, are not new. We can find them first in Plato’s dialogue Meno, where Socrates and Meno have a discussion about what type of guide one should prefer if one wants to get to Larissa. The first suggestion is that one should want a guide who knows the way, but Socrates notes that a guide with true opinions will work just as well. Meno’s response to Socrates’ objection raises precisely the correct worries: he wonders about the nature of knowledge (whether it differs from true opinion) and about the value of knowledge (why we prize it over true opinion). The point of view of value-driven epistemology is that a myopic focus on the former question is a mistake and that questions about the value of knowledge and other epistemic phenomena are important in their own right and can help evaluate the adequacy of proposals concerning the nature of knowledge and other epistemic phenomena.
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