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Ron Wilburn [23]Ronald Joseph Wilburn [1]
  1. Ron Wilburn, The Probability of the Possible.
    In “Why is There Anything at All?” Peter van Inwagen argues that even though it was never necessary that concrete beings existed, it was always maximally probable – just short of necessity – that they did . I argue that van Inwagen’s argument fails, albeit for an interesting reason which has remained so far unnoticed in the literature: there is a critical ten- sion between two of its premises, both essential to its soundness, concerning the nature of comprehensively specified possible (...)
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  2. Ron Wilburn (2012). Pragmatic Method and Realist Commitment. Analysis and Metaphysics 11:54-64.
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  3. Ron Wilburn (2010). Possible Worlds of Doubt. Acta Analytica 25 (2):259-277.
    A prominent contemporary anti-skeptical strategy, most famously articulated by Keith DeRose, aims to cage the skeptic′s doubts by contextualizing subjunctive conditional accounts of knowledge through a conversational rule of sensitivity. This strategy, I argue, courts charges of circularity by selectively invoking heavy counterfactual machinery. The reason: such invocation threatens to utilize a metric for modal comparison that is implicitly informed by judgments of epistemic sameness. This gives us reason to fear that said modal metric is selectively cherry-picked in advance to (...)
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  4. Ron Wilburn (2010). Skepticism, Contextualism, Externalism and Modality. Principia 10 (2):171-187.
    In this paper, I argue for the following claims. Contextualist strategies to tame or localize epistemic skepticism are hopeless if contextualist factors are construed internalistically. However, because efforts to contextualize externalism via subjunctive conditional analysis court circularity, it is only on an internalistic interpretation that contextualist strategies can even be motivated. While these claims do not give us an argument for skepticism, they do give us an argument that contextualism, as such, is not likely to provide us with an argument (...)
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  5. Ron Wilburn (2009). Implicature, Appropriateness and Warranted Assertability. Protosociology 26:241-261.
    In a number of papers, Keith DeRose articulates his reasons for thinking that we cannot plausibly explain the mechanics of knowledge attribution in terms of varying conditions of warranted assertability . His reasoning is largely comparative: “know,” he argues, proves a poor candidate for such a diagnosis when compared to other terms to which such warranted assertabilility maneuvers clearly apply. More specifically, DeRose aims, through to use of such comparative case studies, to identify several general principles through which we might (...)
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  6. Ron Wilburn (2008). Epistemic Contextualism and Sceptical Epistemology. Logical Analysis and History of Philosophy 11.
    Philosophers generally assume that “contextual” factors blunt the force of “external world” skepticism. I argue herein that this is not the case. On the contrary, properly invoked contextual considerations support, rather than undermine, the skeptic's agenda. This is because the contexts of assessment against which we rightfully judge that knowledge is or is not available ultimately consist in little more than our own presuppositions concerning the objectivity of the items at issue. What this implies, given the mind-independence of the external (...)
     
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  7. Ron Wilburn (2008). Moral Knowledge and Moral Factuality. Ethic@ 7:69-85.
    For naturalistic and non-intuitionistic moral realists, moral knowledge is more problematic than ordinary and scientific factual knowledge. For without special faculties of moral discernment, how could we ever detect moral facts and properties? Physical facts and properties may be accessible to perceptual recognition. But how could moral facts and properties ever be similarly accessible? To address this challenge, we need a meta-ethical account that does two things. First, it must explain how the discernment of moralfacts and properties ultimately consists only (...)
     
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  8. Ron Wilburn (2004). Moral Realism, Supervenience, Externalism and the Limits of Conceptual Metaphor. Protosociology 20:320-373.
    In this paper, I articulate a form of moral realism that I take to be of special promise. I hope to show, not only that this realist position satisfies cognitivist, objectivist and success constraints, but also that this position is particularly commended by a number of recent apologetic strategies that have been more commonly deployed in the defense of other non-moral varieties of realism. To this extent, I aim to show that moral realism, far from being a desperate or quixotic (...)
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  9. Ron Wilburn (2004). The Pragmatic Value of Pragmatics Values. Dialogos 39:179-192.
     
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  10. Dave Beisecker & Ron Wilburn (2003). World's Minds Meet in Turkey. The Philosophers' Magazine 24 (24):11-12.
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  11. Ron Wilburn (2003). Knowledge, Content and the Wellsprings of Objectivity. In Preyer Gerhard, Peter Georg & Ulkan Maria (eds.), Protosociology. Klewer Academic Publishers
    This volume includes contributions from well-known philosophers of language and semanticists. It is a useful collection for students in philosophy of language, semantics and epistemology. It discusses new research in semantics, theory of truth, philosophy of language and theory of communication from a trans-disciplinary perspective and addresses issues such as sentence meaning, utterance meaning, speaker's intention and reference, linguistic context, circumstances and background theories.
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  12. Ron Wilburn (2002). Does Analytic Philosophy Terminate in Pragmatism? PhilosophiegeschichteUnd Logiche Analyse (5) 5:111-140.
    Over the last several decades, Richard Rorty has developed a compelling metaphilosophical theory on the history of analytic philosophy. On this telling, analytic philosophy was atavistic from the outset, a forlorn attempt to reinstate scheme/content distinctions. Rather than asking whether our claims "correspond" to some nonhuman, eternal way the world is, we should ask about their pragmatic utility. On Rorty's account, analytic philosophy terminates in pragmatism. In this paper, I argue against this assessment of the fate of our tradition. More (...)
     
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  13. Ron Wilburn (2001). Is the Skeptic¿s Reasoning Our Own? Epistemological Realism as an Intuiteve Doctrine. Dialogos 36:55-74.
     
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  14. Ron Wilburn (2001). More Fun Than Pigs. The Philosophers' Magazine 15:33-33.
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  15. Ron Wilburn, Todd Jones & David Beisecker (2001). Moscow Nights. The Philosophers' Magazine 15 (15):30-31.
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  16. Ron Wilburn (2000). Metaphysical Realism as Less Than a Dogma. Dialogos 35 (76):85-96.
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  17. Ron Wilburn (1999). Objectivity, Triangulation and the Skeptic. Southwest Philosophy Review 15 (1):17-26.
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  18. Ron Wilburn (1998). Epistemological Realism as the Skeptic's Heart of Darkness. Journal of Philosophical Research 23:165-217.
    Michael Williams has argued that radical “external world” skepticism, far from being an interesting philosophical discovery about knowledge, is actually a philosophical artifact, a by-product of “Epistemological Realism,” the view that there are objective epistemological relations able to group distinct kinds of “knowledge” (e.g., “experiential” vs. “external worldly”) into a context-invariant evidential order. I argue against this thesis. It is the skeptic’s conception of the world’s objectivity, not his conception of knowledge’s objectivity as a singular unified context-invariant structure, I maintain, (...)
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  19. Ron Wilburn (1998). Skepticism, Objectivity and the Aspirations of Immanence. Dialectica 52 (4):291–318.
    Quine's attitude toward external world skepticism remains, to this day, less than completely clear. As one might except, Quine seems to dismiss such concerns in most of his work as beneath refutation. But, occasionally Quine seems to adopt an alternative stance, a stance from which he aims to address the issue, not simply ignore it. This is particularly true of Quine's brief but pithy “Response to Stroud,” wherein he seeks to defend the adequacy of epistemology naturalized qua knowledge theory against (...)
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  20. Ron Wilburn (1997). Posits and Positing. Southwest Philosophy Review 13 (1):91-102.
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  21. Ron Wilburn (1995). Book Reviews. [REVIEW] Mind 104 (414):413-419.
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  22. Ron Wilburn (1992). Semantic Indeterminacy and the Realist Stance. Erkenntnis 37 (3):281 - 308.
    Semantic Indeterminacy and Scientific Realism are perhaps the two most ubiquitous and influential doctrines of the Quinean corpus. My concern is to argue against neither in isolation, but against their joint compatibility. Scientific Realism, I argue, when understood as Quine's realistic attitude toward the posits of physical theory, is essentially intentional in character. Thus, Realism requires Intentionality. In Section 1, I provide some necessary exegesis. In Section 2, I attempt to show how this Realism/Intentionality connection arises, surprisingly, within Quine's own (...)
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