David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 105 (1):1-23 (2005)
A striking feature of the traditional armchair method of philosophy is the use of imaginary examples: for instance, of Gettier cases as counterexamples to the justified true belief analysis of knowledge. The use of such examples is often thought to involve some sort of a priori rational intuition, which crude rationalists regard as a virtue and crude empiricists as a vice. It is argued here that, on the contrary, what is involved is simply an application of our general cognitive capacity to handle counterfactual conditionals, which is not exclusively a priori and is not usefully conceived as a form of rational intuition. It is explained how questions of metaphysical possibility and necessity are equivalent to questions about counterfactuals, and the epistemology of the former (in particular, the role of conceiving or imagining) is a special case of the epistemology of the latter. A non-imaginary Gettier case is presented in order to show how little difference it makes.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Joshua Earlenbaugh & Bernard Molyneux (2009). Intuitions Are Inclinations to Believe. Philosophical Studies 145 (1):89 - 109.
Elijah Chudnoff (2011). What Intuitions Are Like. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 82 (3):625-654.
Christina Starmans & Ori Friedman (2012). The Folk Conception of Knowledge. Cognition 124 (3):272-283.
Jonathan M. Weinberg, Chad Gonnerman, Cameron Buckner & Joshua Alexander (2010). Are Philosophers Expert Intuiters? Philosophical Psychology 23 (3):331-355.
Jonathan D. Jacobs (2010). A Powers Theory of Modality: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Reject Possible Worlds. Philosophical Studies 151 (2):227-248.
Similar books and articles
Tuomas E. Tahko (2008). A New Definition of A Priori Knowledge: In Search of a Modal Basis. Metaphysica 9 (2):57-68.
C. S. Jenkins (2008). Modal Knowledge, Counterfactual Knowledge and the Role of Experience. Philosophical Quarterly 58 (233):693-701.
Andrea Sauchelli (2010). Concrete Possible Worlds and Counterfactual Conditionals: Lewis Versus Williamson on Modal Knowledge. Synthese 176 (3):345-359.
Tuomas E. Tahko (2012). Counterfactuals and Modal Epistemology. Grazer Philosophische Studien 86 (1):93–115.
Christopher Peacocke (2011). Understanding, Modality, Logical Operators. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 82 (2):472 - 480.
Thomas Kroedel (2012). Counterfactuals and the Epistemology of Modality. Philosophers' Imprint 12 (12).
Timothy Wilkinson (2004). The Presidential Address I—Armchair Philosophy, Metaphysical Modality and Counterfactual Thinking. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 105 (1):1–23.
Timothy Williamson (2007). Philosophical Knowledge and Knowledge of Counterfactuals. Grazer Philosophische Studien 74 (1):89-123.
Timothy Williamson (2005). The Presidential Address: Armchair Philosophy, Metaphysical Modality and Counterfactual Thinking. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 105:1 - 23.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads205 ( #3,053 of 1,101,898 )
Recent downloads (6 months)8 ( #34,086 of 1,101,898 )
How can I increase my downloads?