David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Analytic Philosophy 55 (3):158-168 (2015)
Several authors have argued that, assuming we have apriori knowledge of our own thought-contents, semantic externalism implies that we can know apriori contingent facts about the empirical world. After presenting the argument, I shall respond by resisting the premise that an externalist can know apriori: If s/he has the concept water, then water exists. In particular, Boghossian's Dry Earth example suggests that such thought-experiments do not provide such apriori knowledge. Boghossian himself rejects the Dry Earth experiment, however, since it would imply that externalism is true of empty concepts as well as non-empty concepts. Yet in this paper I respond by defending empty-concept externalism, from criticisms suggested by Boghossian and Brown, and recently developed further by Besson. My contention is that an externalist can give a non-ad hoc descriptivist account of empty concepts. Accordingly, apriori self-knowledge does not enable an externalist to know contingent features of the external world.
|Keywords||externalism self-knowledge a priori Boghossian, Paul Burge, Tyler anti-individualism Brown, Jessica McKinsey, Michael content logical form|
|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
Saul A. Kripke (1980/1998). Naming and Necessity. Harvard University Press.
Jerry A. Fodor (1975). The Language of Thought. Harvard University Press.
Michael Devitt (1999). Language and Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Language. MIT Press.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Sanford C. Goldberg (2003). Anti-Individualism, Conceptual Omniscience, and Skepticism. Philosophical Studies 116 (1):53-78.
T. Parent (2015). Externalism and “Knowing What” One Thinks. Synthese 192 (5):1337-1350.
Jessica Brown (1999). Boghossian on Externalism and Privileged Access. Analysis 59 (1):52-59.
Paul A. Boghossian (1997). What the Externalist Can Know A Priori. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 97 (2):161-75.
Andr Gallois (1996). Externalism and Skepticism. Philosophical Studies 81 (1):1-26.
Richard W. Miller (1997). Externalist Self-Knowledge and the Scope of the a Priori. Analysis 57 (1):67-74.
Klaas J. Kraay (2002). Externalism, Memory, and Self-Knowledge. Erkenntnis 56 (3):297-317.
Tom Stoneham (1999). Boghossian on Empty Natural Kind Concepts. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 99 (1):119-22.
Jussi Haukioja (2006). Semantic Externalism and A Priori Self-Knowledge. Ratio 19 (2):149-159.
Added to index2009-05-28
Total downloads193 ( #11,196 of 1,781,221 )
Recent downloads (6 months)38 ( #19,534 of 1,781,221 )
How can I increase my downloads?