David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Dialectica 60 (4):433-445 (2006)
I look at incompatibilist arguments aimed at showing that the conjunction of the thesis that a subject has privileged, a priori access to the contents of her own thoughts, on the one hand, and of semantic externalism, on the other, lead to a putatively absurd conclusion, namely, a priori knowledge of the external world. I focus on arguments involving a variety of externalism resulting from the singularity or object-dependence of certain terms such as the demonstrative ‘that’. McKinsey argues that incompatibilist arguments employing such externalist theses are at their strongest, and conclusively show that privileged access must be rejected. While I agree on the truth of the relevant externalist theses, I show that all plausible versions of the incompatibilist reductio argument as applied to such theses are fundamentally flawed, for these versions of the argument must make assumptions that lead to putatively absurd knowledge of the external world independently of the thesis of privileged access.
|Keywords||externalism self knowledge privileged access a priori knowledge McKinsey armchair|
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References found in this work BETA
Joseph Almog, John Perry, Howard K. Wettstein & David Kaplan (eds.) (1989). Themes From Kaplan. Oxford University Press, USA.
Saul Kripke (2010). Naming and Necessity. In Darragh Byrne & Max Kölbel (eds.), Philosophy. Routledge 431-433.
C. Macdonald, Barry C. Smith & C. J. G. Wright (1998). Knowing Our Own Minds: Essays in Self-Knowledge. Oxford University Press.
C. J. G. Wright (2000). Cogency and Question-Begging: Some Reflections on McKinsey's Paradox and Putnam's Proof. Philosophical Issues 10 (s1):140-63.
Citations of this work BETA
Maria Lasonen-Aarnio (2008). Why the Externalist is Better Off Without Free Logic: A Reply to McKinsey. Dialectica 62 (4):535-540.
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