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Profile: Ema Sullivan-Bissett (University of Birmingham)
  1.  39
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett (2015). Implicit Bias, Confabulation, and Epistemic Innocence. Consciousness and Cognition 33:548-560.
    In this paper I explore the nature of confabulatory explanations of action guided by implicit bias. I claim that such explanations can have significant epistemic benefits in spite of their obvious epistemic costs, and that such benefits are not otherwise obtainable by the subject at the time at which the explanation is offered. I start by outlining the kinds of cases I have in mind, before characterising the phenomenon of confabulation by focusing on a few common features. Then I introduce (...)
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  2.  60
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett & Paul Noordhof (2013). A Defence of Owens' Exclusivity Objection to Beliefs Having Aims. Philosophical Studies 163 (2):453-457.
    In this paper we argue that Steglich-Petersen’s response to Owens’ Exclusivity Objection does not work. Our first point is that the examples Steglich-Petersen uses to demonstrate his argument do not work because they employ an undefended conception of the truth aim not shared by his target (and officially eschewed by Steglich-Petersen himself). Secondly we will make the point that deliberating over whether to form a belief about p is not part of the belief forming process. When an agent enters into (...)
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  3.  10
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett (forthcoming). The Role of Emotions and Values in Competence. Journal of Medical Ethics.
  4.  11
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett (forthcoming). Malfunction Defended. Synthese:1-22.
    Historical accounts of biological function are thought to have, as a point in their favour, their being able to accommodate malfunction. Recently, this has been brought into doubt by Paul Sheldon Davies’s argument for the claim that both selected malfunction (that of the selected functions account) and weak etiological malfunction (that of the weak etiological account), are impossible. In this paper I suggest that in light of Davies’s objection, historical accounts of biological function need to be adjusted to accommodate malfunction. (...)
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  5.  10
    Lisa Bortolotti, Ema Sullivan-Bissett & Rachel Gunn (forthcoming). What Makes a Belief Delusional? In I. McCarthy, K. Sellevold & O. Smith (eds.), Cognitive Confusions. Legenda
    In philosophy, psychiatry, and cognitive science, definitions of clinical delusions are not based on the mechanisms responsible for the formation of delusions. Some of the defining features of delusions are epistemic and focus on whether delusions are true, justified, or rational, as in the definition of delusions as fixed beliefs that are badly supported by evidence). Other defining features of delusions are psychological and they focus on whether delusions are harmful, as in the definition of delusions as beliefs that disrupt (...)
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  6.  19
    Lisa Bortolotti & Ema Sullivan-Bissett (2015). Costs and Benefits of Imperfect Cognitions. Consciousness and Cognition 33:487-489.
    Introduction to a special issue of Consciousness and Cognition on the costs and benefits of imperfect cognitions.
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  7.  6
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett (2015). The Aim of Belief, Edited by Timothy Chan. Mind 124 (496):1258-1264.
    Review of Timothy Chan's (ed.) The Aim of Belief.
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  8.  4
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett (2012). Changing Approaches to Blindsight: Relevant, but Not Decisive: Reply to Foley. Philosophical Writings:56-60.
  9.  27
    Ema Sullivan-Bissett & Rafe Mcgregor (2012). Better No Longer to Be. South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (1):55-68.
    David Benatar argues that coming into existence is always a harm, and that – for all of us unfortunate enough to have come into existence – it would be better had we never come to be. We contend that if one accepts Benatar’s arguments for the asymmetry between the presence and absence of pleasure and pain, and the poor quality of life, one must also accept that suicide is preferable to continued existence, and that his view therefore implies both anti-natalism (...)
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  10.  8
    Lisa Botolotti & Ema Sullivan-Bissett (2014). Review of New Essays on Belief: Constitution, Content and Structure by Nikolaj Nottelmann. [REVIEW] Dialectica 68 (1):141-146.
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  11. Ema Sullivan-Bissett (forthcoming). Aims and Exclusivity. European Journal of Philosophy.
    If belief has an aim by being a (quasi) intentional activity, then it ought to be the case that the aim of belief can be weighed against other aims one might have. However, this is not so with the putative truth aim of belief: from the first-person perspective, one can only be motivated by truth considerations in deliberation over what to believe (exclusivity). From this perspective then, the aim cannot be weighed. This problem is captured by David Owens’s Exclusivity Objection (...)
     
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  12. Ema Sullivan-Bissett, Helen Bradley & Paul Noordhof (eds.) (forthcoming). Art and Belief. Oxford University Press.
  13. Ema Sullivan-Bissett (forthcoming). Biological Function and Epistemic Normativity. Philosophical Explorations.
    I give a biological account of epistemic normativity. My account explains the sense in which it is true that belief is subject to a standard of correctness, and reduces epistemic norms to there being doxastic strategies which guide how best to meet that standard. Additionally, I give an explanation of the mistakes we make in our epistemic discourse, understood as either taking epistemic properties and norms to be sui generis and irreducible, and/or as failing to recognize the reductive base of (...)
     
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