David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Philosophical Logic 39 (6):655-678 (2010)
The principle of indifference (hereafter ‘Poi’) says that if one has no more reason to believe A than B (and vice versa ), then one ought not to believe A more than B (nor vice versa ). Many think it’s demonstrably false despite its intuitive plausibility, because of a particular style of thought experiment that generates counterexamples. Roger White ( 2008 ) defends Poi by arguing that its antecedent is false in these thought experiments. Like White I believe Poi, but I find his defense unsatisfactory for two reasons: it appeals to false premises, and it saves Poi only at the expense of something that Poi’s believers likely find just as important. So in this essay I defend Poi by arguing that its antecedent does hold in the relevant thought experiments, and that the further propositions needed to reject Poi are false. I play only defense in this essay; I don’t argue that Poi is true (even though I think it is), but rather that one popular refutation is faulty. In showing this, I also note something that has to my knowledge gone unnoticed: given some innocuous-looking assumptions the denial of Poi is equivalent to a version of epistemic permissivism , and Poi itself is equivalent to a version of epistemic uniqueness
|Keywords||Principle of indifference Belief Evidence Uniqueness Permissivism|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Roger White (2005). Epistemic Permissiveness. Philosophical Perspectives 19 (1):445–459.
John Maynard Keynes (1921). A Treatise on Probability. Dover Publications.
Roger White (2009). Evidential Symmetry and Mushy Credence. In T. Szabo Gendler & J. Hawthorne (eds.), Oxford Studies in Epistemology. Oxford University Press 161-186.
Roger White (2009). Oxford Studies in Epistemology. Oxford University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Michael G. Titelbaum (2010). Not Enough There There: Evidence, Reasons, and Language Independence. Philosophical Perspectives 24 (1):477-528.
Martin Smith (2015). Evidential Incomparability and the Principle of Indifference. Erkenntnis 80 (3):605-616.
Similar books and articles
Victor Saxer (1984). La ricerca agiografica dai Bollandisti in poi. Augustinianum 24 (1/2):333-345.
Armen T. Marsoobian (1996). Saying, Singing, or Semiotics: "Prima la Musica E Poi le Parole" Revisited. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 54 (3):269-277.
Andrew Haas (2012). The Birth of Language Out of the Spirit of Improvisation. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 20 (3):331-347.
Rodolfo de Cristofaro (2008). A New Formulation of the Principle of Indifference. Synthese 163 (3):329-339.
Rodolfo De Cristofaro (2008). A New Formulation of the Principle of Indifference. Synthese 163 (3):329 - 339.
Dylan Dodd (2013). Roger White's Argument Against Imprecise Credences. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (1):69-77.
Brian Weatherson (2003). Are You a Sim? Philosophical Quarterly 53 (212):425–431.
Brian Weatherson (2005). Should We Respond to Evil with Indifference? Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 70 (3):613–635.
Avrum Stroll & Henry Alexander (1975). 'True' and Truth. Philosophy of Science 42 (4):384-410.
Elinor Mason (2004). Consequentialism and the Principle of Indifference. Utilitas 16 (3):316-321.
Conor McHugh (2010). Self-Knowledge and the KK Principle. Synthese 173 (3):231 - 257.
Justin A. Capes (2010). The W-Defense. Philosophical Studies 150 (1):61-77.
Gonzalo Rodriguez-Pereyra (2006). Truthmaking, Entailment, and the Conjunction Thesis. Mind 115 (460):957-982.
Kostas Kalimtzis (2007). Philosophical Foundations of Praxis in Poiesis. The Proceedings of the Twenty-First World Congress of Philosophy 10:31-36.
Added to index2010-11-17
Total downloads82 ( #51,663 of 1,906,928 )
Recent downloads (6 months)14 ( #45,735 of 1,906,928 )
How can I increase my downloads?