Why epistemologists are so down on their luck

Synthese 158 (3):329 - 344 (2007)
It is nearly universally acknowledged among epistemologists that a belief, even if true, cannot count as knowledge if it is somehow largely a matter of luck that the person so arrived at the truth. A striking feature of this literature, however, is that while many epistemologists are busy arguing about which particular technical condition most effectively rules out the offensive presence of luck in true believing, almost no one is asking why it matters so much that knowledge be immune from luck in the first place. I argue that the best explanation for the consensus that luck undermines knowledge is that knowledge is, complications aside, credit-worthy true believing. To make this case, I develop both the notions of luck and credit, and sketch a theory of knowledge in those terms. Furthermore, this account also holds promise for being able to solve the “value problem” for knowledge, and it explains why both internal and external conditions are necessary to turn true belief into knowledge.
Keywords Epistemology  Knowledge  Luck  Credit
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,651
External links
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
Ernest Sosa (1991). Knowledge in Perspective. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Pamela Hieronymi (2006). Controlling Attitudes. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 87 (1):45-74.
Wayne D. Riggs (2002). Reliability and the Value of Knowledge. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 64 (1):79-96.

View all 12 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Peter Baumann (2014). No Luck With Knowledge? On a Dogma of Epistemology. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (3):523-551.
Tomas Bogardus (2014). Knowledge Under Threat. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (2):289-313.

View all 34 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

112 ( #39,711 of 1,902,539 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

27 ( #19,115 of 1,902,539 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.