Epistemology of Testimony

Edited by Stephen Wright (Oxford University)
Assistant editor: Jonathan Reibsamen (Columbia International University)
About this topic
Summary Perhaps most of what we take ourselves to know about the world and its history comes from testimony we have received. The epistemology of testimony is concerned with questions regarding the nature and normativity of testimonial belief and knowledge. The literature on testimony is large and growing, and identifiable subdivisions have begun to appear. In the late 1980s and early 1990s the central question concerned the nature of justification from testimony. Reductionists (or “reductivists”) about testimonial justification, following Locke and Hume, argued that an individual’s justification from testimony reduces to other kinds of justification, such as justification from that individual’s own sensory perception, memory, and inference. The anti-reductionist (or “non-reductivist”), often citing Thomas Reid as inspiration, argued that justification from testimony does not reduce to justification from other sources. However, not all in the reductionist camp agree about what justification from testimony reduces to, and not all in the anti-reductionist camp agree about the nature of the justification from testimony. Other questions addressed in recent epistemology of testimony literature include: Under what conditions are testimonial beliefs justified or epistemically warranted? Is testimony a transmissive source of knowledge or justification, or a generative source? Are there unique epistemic norms governing testimony? Are there unique speech acts within the category of ‘testimony’ that bring with them unique epistemic entitlements? Does testimonial belief enjoy a kind of default justification? Can groups be testifiers, and if so, are the epistemic norms governing the production and reception of group testimony the same or different from those governing testimony from individuals?
Key works

Historical antecedents to the contemporary literature include Locke’s Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Hume’s On Miracles, and Reid’s An Inquiry into the Human Mind and Essays on the Intellectual Powers of Man. Significant contemporary works include: C. A. J. Coady’s Testimony: A Philosophical Study (Coady 1992), Tyler Burge’s “Content Preservation” (Burge 1993) and “Interlocution, Perception, and Memory” (Burge 1997), Elizabeth Fricker’s “Against Gullibility” (Fricker 1994) and “Second-Hand Knowledge” (Fricker 2006), Jennifer Lackey’s Learning from Words (Lackey 2008), and Sanford Goldberg’s Relying on Others (Goldberg 2010). For an overview, John Greco’s “Recent Work on Testimonial Knowledge” (Greco 2012) is a good place to start.

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  1. Epistemic Vice Predicts Acceptance of Covid-19 Misinformation.Marco Meyer, Mark Alfano & Boudewijn De Bruin - manuscript
    Why are mistaken beliefs about Covid-19 so prevalent? Political identity, education and other demographic variables explain only a part of individual differences in the susceptibility to Covid-19 misinformation. This paper focuses on another explanation: epistemic vice. Epistemic vices are character traits that interfere with acquiring, maintaining, and transmitting knowledge. If the basic assumption of vice epistemology is right, then people with epistemic vices such as indifference to the truth or rigidity in their belief structures will tend to be more susceptible (...)
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  2. The Epistemic and Moral Role of Testimony†.Katherine L. Caldwell - forthcoming - History and Theory.
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  3. Intellectual Humility, Testimony, and Epistemic Injustice.Ian M. Church - forthcoming - In Mark Alfano, Michael Lynch & Alessandra Tanesini (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy of Humility. New York, USA: Routledge.
    In this exploratory paper, I consider how intellectual humility and epistemic injustice might contribute to the failure of testimonial exchanges. In §1, I will briefly highlight four broad ways a testimonial exchange might fail. In §2, I will very briefly review the nature of epistemic injustice. In §3, I will explore how both epistemic injustice and intellectual humility can lead to failures in testimonial exchange, and I’ll conclude by suggesting how intellectual humility and epistemic injustice might be related.
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  4. Critical Notice of Jonathan Sutton, Without Justification.E. J. Coffman - forthcoming - Philosophical Books.
    In Without Justification,[1] Jonathan Sutton undermines the orthodox view that a justified belief needn’t constitute knowledge; develops a battery of arguments for the unorthodox thesis that you justifiedly believe P iff you know P; and explores the topics of testimony and inference in light of his equation of justification and knowledge (J=K). This book is essential reading at epistemology’s cutting edge. In §I, we’ll take an extended tour of the book, raising various questions and objections along the way. In §II, (...)
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  5. Testimonial Injustice and Mutual Recognition.Lindsay Crawford - forthcoming - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.
    Much of the recent work on the nature of testimonial injustice holds that a hearer who fails to accord sufficient credibility to a speaker’s testimony, owing to identity prejudice, can thereby wrong that speaker. What is it to wrong someone in this way? This paper offers an account of the wrong at the heart of testimonial injustice that locates it in a failure of interpersonal justifiability. On the account I develop, one that draws directly from T. M. Scanlon’s moral contractualist (...)
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  6. Language and Testimony in Classical Indian Philosophy.Madhav Deshpande - forthcoming - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  7. Can Artificail Entities Assert?Ori Freiman & Boaz Miller - forthcoming - In Sanford C. Goldberg (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Assertion. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
    There is an existing debate regarding the view that technological instruments, devices, or machines can assert ‎or testify. A standard view in epistemology is that only humans can testify. However, the notion of quasi-‎testimony acknowledges that technological devices can assert or testify under some conditions, without ‎denying that humans and machines are not the same. Indeed, there are four relevant differences between ‎humans and instruments. First, unlike humans, machine assertion is not imaginative or playful. Second, ‎machine assertion is prescripted and (...)
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  8. Virtue Epistemology and Explanatory Salience.Georgi Gardiner - forthcoming - In Heather Battaly (ed.), Routledge Handbook of Virtue Epistemology. Routledge.
    Robust virtue epistemology holds that knowledge is true belief obtained through cognitive ability. In this essay I explain that robust virtue epistemology faces a dilemma, and the viability of the theory depends on an adequate understanding of the ‘through’ relation. Greco interprets this ‘through’ relation as one of causal explanation; the success is through the agent’s abilities iff the abilities play a sufficiently salient role in a causal explanation of why she possesses a true belief. In this paper I argue (...)
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  9. Preemptive Authority: The Challenge From Outrageous Expert Judgment.Thomas Grundmann - forthcoming - Episteme.
    Typically, expert judgments are regarded by laypeople as highly trustworthy. However, expert assertions that strike the layperson as obviously false or outrageous, seem to give one a perfect reason to dispute that this judgment manifests expertise. In this paper, I will defend four claims. First, I will deliver an argument in support of the preemption view on expert judgments according to which we should not rationally use our own domain-specific reasons in the face of expert testimony. Secondly, I will argue (...)
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  10. Facing Epistemic Authorities: Where Democratic Ideals and Critical Thinking Mislead Cognition.Thomas Grundmann - forthcoming - In Sven Bernecker, Amy Floweree & Thomas Grundmann (eds.), The Epistemology of Fake News. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Disrespect for the truth, the rise of conspiracy thinking, and a pervasive distrust in experts are widespread features of the post-truth condition in current politics and public opinion. Among the many good explanations of these phenomena there is one that is only rarely discussed: that something is wrong with our deeply entrenched intellectual standards of (i) using our own critical thinking without any restriction and (ii) respecting the judgment of every rational agent as epistemically relevant. In this paper, I will (...)
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  11. Fake News: The Case for a Purely Consumer-Oriented Explication.Thomas Grundmann - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    Our current understanding of ‘fake news’ is not in good shape. On the one hand, this category seems to be urgently needed for an adequate understanding of the epistemology in the age of the internet. On the other hand, the term has an unstable ordinary meaning and the prevalent accounts which all relate fake news to epistemically bad attitudes of the producer lack theoretical unity, sufficient extensional adequacy, and epistemic fruitfulness. I will therefore suggest an alternative account of fake news (...)
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  12. The Role of Assurance in Judgment and Memory.Edward Hinchman - forthcoming - In Sanford Goldberg & Stephen Wright (eds.), Memory and Testimony: New Essays in Epistemology.
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  13. Believing the Incomprehensible God: Aquinas on Understanding God’s Testimony.O. P. James Dominic Rooney - forthcoming - Proceedings of the American Catholic Philosophical Association.
    While there has been recent epistemological interest as to whether knowledge is 'transmitted' by testimony from the testifier to the hearer, there is another facet of the epistemology of testimony that raises a distinct problem: whether a hearer can receive testimonial knowledge without fully understanding the content of the testimony. Aquinas' account of faith illustrates the problem of receiving testimonial knowledge without being able to comprehend the content of testimony. As Aquinas conceives of it, revelation provides a case in principle (...)
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  14. Trust and Belief.Arnon Keren - forthcoming - In Judith Simon (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Trust and Philosophy. New York, USA: pp. 109-120.
    One fundamental divide among philosophers studying the nature of trust concerns the relation between trust and belief. According to doxastic accounts of trust, trust entails a belief about the trustee: either the belief that she is trustworthy with respect to what she is trusted to do, or that she will do what she is trusted to do. Non-doxastic accounts deny that trusting entails holding such a belief. The chapter describes and evaluates the main considerations which have been cited for and (...)
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  15. Moral Testimony as Higher Order Evidence.Marcus Lee, Jon Robson & Neil Sinclair - forthcoming - In Michael Klenk (ed.), Higher-Order Evidence and Moral Epistemology. Routledge.
    Are the circumstances in which moral testimony serves as evidence that our judgement-forming processes are unreliable the same circumstances in which mundane testimony serves as evidence that our mundane judgement-forming processes are unreliable? In answering this question, we distinguish two possible roles for testimony: (i) providing a legitimate basis for a judgement, (ii) providing (‘higher-order’) evidence that a judgement-forming process is unreliable. We explore the possibilities for a view according to which moral testimony does not, in contrast to mundane testimony (...)
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  16. Testimony, Faith and Humility.Finlay Malcolm - forthcoming - Religious Studies.
    It is sometimes claimed that faith is a virtue. To what extent faith is a virtue depends on what faith is. One construal of faith, which has been popular in both recent and historical work on faith, is that faith is a matter of taking oneself to have been spoken to by God and of trusting this purported divine testimony. In this paper, I argue that when faith is understood in this way, for faith to be virtuous then it must (...)
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  17. A Priori Testimony Revisited.Anna-Sara Malmgren - forthcoming - In Albert Casullo & Joshua Thurow (eds.), The A Priori in Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
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  18. Social Epistemology.Boaz Miller - forthcoming - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  19. The Puzzle of Philosophical Testimony.Christopher Ranalli - forthcoming - European Journal of Philosophy.
    An epistemologist tells you that knowledge is more than justified true belief. You trust them and thus come to believe this on the basis of their testimony. Did you thereby come to know that this view is correct? Intuitively, there is something intellectually wrong with forming philosophical beliefs on the basis of testimony, and yet it's hard to see why philosophy should be significantly epistemically different from other areas of inquiry in a way that would fully prohibit belief by testimony. (...)
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  20. Can Real Social Epistemic Networks Deliver the Wisdom of Crowds?Emily Sullivan, Max Sondag, Ignaz Rutter, Wouter Meulemans, Scott Cunningham, Bettina Speckmann & Mark Alfano - forthcoming - In Tania Lombrozo, Joshua Knobe & Shaun Nichols (eds.), Oxford Studies in Experimental Philosophy, Volume 1. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    In this paper, we explain and showcase the promising methodology of testimonial network analysis and visualization for experimental epistemology, arguing that it can be used to gain insights and answer philosophical questions in social epistemology. Our use case is the epistemic community that discusses vaccine safety primarily in English on Twitter. In two studies, we show, using both statistical analysis and exploratory data visualization, that there is almost no neutral or ambivalent discussion of vaccine safety on Twitter. Roughly half the (...)
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  21. A Credibility-Backed Norm for Testimony.Matt Weiner - forthcoming - Episteme:1-13.
    I propose that testimony is subject to a norm that is backed by a credibility sanction: whenever the norm is violated, it is appropriate for the testifier to lose some credibility for their future testimony. This is one of a family of sanction-based norms, where violation of the norm makes it appropriate to lose some power; in this case, the power to induce belief through testimony. The applicability of the credibility norm to testimony follows from the epistemology of testimony, in (...)
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  22. The Symmetry Problem for Testimonial Conservatism.Matthew Jope - 2021 - Synthese 1:1-19.
    A prima facie plausible and widely held view in epistemology is that the epistemic standards governing the acquisition of testimonial knowledge are stronger than the epistemic standards governing the acquisition of perceptual knowledge. Conservatives about testimony hold that we need prior justification to take speakers to be reliable but recognise that the corresponding claim about perception is deeply problematic. The problem for conservatives is how to establish theoretically significant differences between testimony and perception that would support asymmetrical epistemic standards. In (...)
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  23. Illuminating the Mind: An Introduction to Buddhist Epistemology.Jonathan Stoltz - 2021 - New York, NY, USA: Oxford University Press.
    This book provides readers with an introduction to epistemology within the Buddhist intellectual tradition. It is designed to be accessible to those whose primary background is in the “Western” tradition of philosophy and who have little or no previous exposure to Buddhist philosophical writings. The book examines many of the most important topics in the field of epistemology, topics that are central both to contemporary discussions of epistemology and to the classical Buddhist tradition of epistemology in India and Tibet. Among (...)
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  24. Time Sensitivity and Acceptance of Testimony.Nader Alsamaani - 2020 - Organon F: Medzinárodný Časopis Pre Analytickú Filozofiu 27 (4):422–436.
    Time sensitivity seems to affect our intuitive evaluation of the reasonable risk of fallibility in testimonies. All things being equal, we tend to be less demanding in accepting time sensitive testimonies as opposed to time insensitive testimonies. This paper considers this intuitive response to testimonies as a strategy of acceptance. It argues that the intuitive strategy, which takes time sensitivity into account, is epistemically superior to two adjacent strategies that do not: the undemanding strategy adopted by non-reductionists and the cautious (...)
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  25. Why Don't We Trust Moral Testimony?James Andow - 2020 - Mind and Language 35 (4):456-474.
  26. Moral Understanding and Cooperative Testimony.Kenneth Boyd - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (1):18-33.
    It is has been argued that there is a problem with moral testimony: testimony is deferential, and basing judgments and actions on deferentially acquired knowledge prevents them from having moral worth. What morality perhaps requires of us, then, is that we understand why a proposition is true, but this is something that cannot be acquired through testimony. I argue here that testimony can be both deferential as well as cooperative, and that one can acquire moral understanding through cooperative testimony. The (...)
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  27. Moral Testimony.Laura Frances Callahan - 2020 - In Miranda Fricker, Peter Graham, David Henderson & Nikolaj J. Pedersen (eds.), The Routledge handbook of social epistemology. New York, NY, USA: pp. 123-134.
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  28. The Ethics and Epistemology of Trust.J. Adam Carter & Mona Simion - 2020 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Trust is a topic of longstanding philosophical interest. It is indispensable to every kind of coordinated human activity, from sport to scientific research. Even more, trust is necessary for the successful dissemination of knowledge, and by extension, for nearly any form of practical deliberation and planning. Without trust, we could achieve few of our goals and would know very little. Despite trust’s fundamental importance in human life, there is substantial philosophical disagreement about what trust is, and further, how trusting is (...)
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  29. Epistemic authority: preemption through source sensitive defeat.Jan Constantin & Thomas Grundmann - 2020 - Synthese 197 (9):4109-4130.
    Modern societies are characterized by a division of epistemic labor between laypeople and epistemic authorities. Authorities are often far more competent than laypeople and can thus, ideally, inform their beliefs. But how should laypeople rationally respond to an authority’s beliefs if they already have beliefs and reasons of their own concerning some subject matter? According to the standard view, the beliefs of epistemic authorities are just further, albeit weighty, pieces of evidence. In contrast, the Preemption View claims that, when one (...)
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  30. Moral Understanding, Testimony, and Moral Exemplarity.Michel Croce - 2020 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 23 (2):373-389.
    While possessing moral understanding is agreed to be a core epistemic and moral value, it remains a matter of dispute whether it can be acquired via testimony and whether it involves an ability to engage in moral reasoning. This paper addresses both issues with the aim of contributing to the current debates on moral understanding in moral epistemology and virtue ethics. It is argued that moral epistemologists should stop appealing to the argument from the transmissibility of moral understanding to make (...)
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  31. Intellectual Humility and Epistemic Trust.Katherine Dormandy - 2020 - In Mark Alfano, Michael Lynch & Alessandra Tanesini (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Humility. Routledge.
    Intellectual humility has something important in common with trust: both, independently, help secure knowledge. But they also do so in tandem, and this chapter discusses how. Intellectual humility is a virtue of a person’s cognitive character; this means that it disposes her to perceive and think in certain ways that help promote knowledge. Trust is a form of cooperation, in which one person depends on another (or on herself) for some end, in a way that is governed by certain norms. (...)
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  32. Epistemic Internalism and Testimonial Justification.Jonathan Egeland - 2020 - Episteme 17 (4):458-474.
    ABSTRACTAccording to epistemic internalists, facts about justification supervene upon one's internal reasons for believing certain propositions. Epistemic externalists, on the other hand, deny this. More specifically, externalists think that the supervenience base of justification isn't exhausted by one's internal reasons for believing certain propositions. In the last decade, the internalism–externalism debate has made its mark on the epistemology of testimony. The proponent of internalism about the epistemology of testimony claims that a hearer's testimonial justification for believing that p supervenes upon (...)
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  33. Group Testimony: Defending a Reductionist View.Domingos Faria - 2020 - Logos and Episteme: An International Journal of Epistemology 11 (3):283-304.
    Our aim in this paper is to defend the reductionist (or deflationist) view on group testimony from the attacks of divergence arguments. We will begin by presenting how divergence arguments can challenge the reductionist view. However, we will argue that these arguments are not decisive to rule out the reductionist view; for, these arguments have false premises, assuming dubious epistemic principles that testimony cannot generate knowledge and understanding. The final part of this paper will be devoted to presenting the advantages (...)
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  34. The Function of Assertion and Social Norms.Peter Graham - 2020 - In Sanford Goldberg (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Assertion. New York, USA: Oxford University Press. pp. 727-748.
    A proper function of an entity is a beneficial effect that helps explain the persistence of the entity. Proper functions thereby arise through feedback mechanisms with beneficial effects as inputs and persistence as outputs. We continue to make assertions because they benefit speakers by benefiting speakers. Hearers benefit from true information. Speakers benefit by influencing hearer belief. If hearers do not benefit, they will not form beliefs in response to assertions. Speakers can then only maintain influence by providing true information, (...)
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  35. Critical Review of Richard Moran, The Exchange of Words. [REVIEW]Peter Graham - 2020 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2.
    Moran's book is sure to be widely read. It does more to bring to light the moral psychology characteristic of tellings understood as assurances than any other work I know. His book raises challenges for other views, introduces interesting and evocative distinctions, and puts together in one place Moran's sustained reflections on the way we provide others a distinctive kind of reason for belief though normatively binding ourselves though the exchange of words. I agree that assurances and acceptances in Moran's (...)
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  36. Transmitting Understanding and Know-How.Stephen Grimm - 2020 - In Stephen Hetherington (ed.), What the Ancients Offer to Contemporary Epistemology. New York, USA: Routledge.
    Among contemporary epistemologists and scholars of ancient philosophy, one often hears that transmitting propositional knowledge by testimony is usually easy and straightforward, but transmitting understanding and know-how by testimony is usually difficult or simply impossible. Further provocative conclusions are then sometimes drawn from these claims: for instance, that know-how and understanding are not types of propositional knowledge. In contrast, I argue that transmitting propositional knowledge is sometimes easy and sometimes hard, just as transmitting know how and understanding is sometimes easy (...)
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  37. Assertion and Testimony.Edward Hinchman - 2020 - In Sanford Goldberg (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Assertion. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [The version of this paper published by Oxford online in 2019 was not copy-edited and has some sense-obscuring typos. I have posted a corrected (but not the final published) version on this site. The version published in print in 2020 has these corrections.] Which is more fundamental, assertion or testimony? Should we understand assertion as basic, treating testimony as what you get when you add an interpersonal addressee? Or should we understand testimony as basic, treating mere assertion -- assertion without (...)
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  38. Testimony, Epistemic Egoism, and Epistemic Credit.Jason Kawall - 2020 - European Journal of Philosophy 28 (2):463-477.
    It is generally acknowledged that testifiers can play a central role in the production of knowledge and other valuable epistemic states in others. But does such a role warrant any form of epistemic credit and is an agent more successful qua epistemic agent insofar as she is a successful testifier? I here propose an affirmative answer to both questions. The core of the current paper consists in a sustained defence of this proposal against a series of objections. I further argue (...)
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  39. Vertrauen, epistemische Rechtfertigung und das Zeugnis wissenschaftlicher Experten.Jon Leefmann - 2020 - In Michael Jungert, Andreas Frewer & Erasmus Mayr (eds.), Wissenschaftsreflexion. Interdisziplinäre Perspektiven zwischen Theorie und Praxis. Paderborn, Deutschland: pp. 69-103.
    Kann Vertrauen in einen Sprecher, kann die Anerkennung einer anderen Person als eine epistemische Autorität nicht auch ein hinreichend guter Grund sein, eine Überzeugung zu rechtfertigen? Und wenn es diese theoretische Option gibt, ist sie im Kontext der Kommunikation zwischen wissenschaftlichen Laien und wissenschaftlichen Experten plausibel? Diesen Fragen geht der Aufsatz in drei Schritten nach. Der erste Teil dient der Klärung des Begriffes »Vertrauen« und arbeitet wesentliche Merkmale dieser mentalen Einstellung heraus. Dies geschieht in der Abgrenzung zum Begriff des Sich-Verlassens, (...)
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  40. On the Possibility of Knowledge Through Unsafe Testimony.B. J. C. Madison - 2020 - Social Epistemology 34 (5):513-526.
    If knowledge requires safety, then one might think that when the epistemic source of knowledge is testimony, that testimony must itself be safe. Otherwise, will not the lack of safety transfer from testimony to hearer, such that hearer will lack knowledge? Resisting this natural line of reasoning, Goldberg (2005; 2007) argues that testimonial knowledge through unsafe testimony is possible on the basis of two cases. Lackey (2008) and Pelling (2013) criticize Goldberg’s examples. But Pelling goes on to provide his own (...)
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  41. Trust and Distributed Epistemic Labor‎.Boaz Miller & Ori Freiman - 2020 - In Judith Simon (ed.), The Routledge Handbook on Trust and Philosophy. New York: Routledge. pp. ‎341-353‎.
    This chapter explores properties that bind individuals, knowledge, and communities, together. Section ‎‎1 introduces Hardwig’s argument from trust in others’ testimonies as entailing that trust is the glue ‎that binds individuals into communities. Section 2 asks “what grounds trust?” by exploring assessment ‎of collaborators’ explanatory responsiveness, formal indicators such as affiliation and credibility, ‎appreciation of peers’ tacit knowledge, game-theoretical considerations, and the role moral character ‎of peers, social biases, and social values play in grounding trust. Section 3 deals with establishing (...)
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  42. Echo Chambers and Epistemic Bubbles.C. Thi Nguyen - 2020 - Episteme 17 (2):141-161.
    Recent conversation has blurred two very different social epistemic phenomena: echo chambers and epistemic bubbles. Members of epistemic bubbles merely lack exposure to relevant information and arguments. Members of echo chambers, on the other hand, have been brought to systematically distrust all outside sources. In epistemic bubbles, other voices are not heard; in echo chambers, other voices are actively undermined. It is crucial to keep these phenomena distinct. First, echo chambers can explain the post-truth phenomena in a way that epistemic (...)
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  43. Cognitive Islands and Runaway Echo Chambers: Problems for Epistemic Dependence on Experts.C. Thi Nguyen - 2020 - Synthese 197 (7):2803-2821.
    I propose to study one problem for epistemic dependence on experts: how to locate experts on what I will call cognitive islands. Cognitive islands are those domains for knowledge in which expertise is required to evaluate other experts. They exist under two conditions: first, that there is no test for expertise available to the inexpert; and second, that the domain is not linked to another domain with such a test. Cognitive islands are the places where we have the fewest resources (...)
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  44. Defending Virtue Epistemology: Epistemic Dependence in Testimony and Extended Cognition.Walker Page - 2020 - Synthese 197 (7):2913-2936.
    This paper provides an account of how virtue epistemology can accommodate knowledge acquired through testimony and extended cognition. Section 1 articulates the characteristic claim of virtue epistemology, and introduces the issues discussed in the paper. Section 2 details a related pair of objections to VE: that it is unable to accommodate cases of knowledge through testimony and extended cognition. Section 3 reviews two different virtue epistemologies and their responses to these objections presented in Greco :1–26, 2012). Considerations are presented for (...)
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  45. The Puzzle of Philosophical Testimony.Chris Ranalli - 2020 - European Journal of Philosophy 28 (1):142-163.
    An epistemologist tells you that knowledge is more than justified true belief. You trust them and thus come to believe this on the basis of their testimony. Did you thereby come to know that this view is correct? Intuitively, there is something intellectually wrong with forming philosophical beliefs on the basis of testimony, and yet it's hard to see why philosophy should be significantly epistemically different from other areas of inquiry in a way that would fully prohibit belief by testimony. (...)
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  46. On the Possibility of Testimonial Justice.Rush T. Stewart & Michael Nielsen - 2020 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 98 (4):732-746.
    Recent impossibility theorems for fair risk assessment extend to the domain of epistemic justice. We translate the relevant model, demonstrating that the problems of fair risk assessment and just credibility assessment are structurally the same. We motivate the fairness criteria involved in the theorems as also being appropriate in the setting of testimonial justice. Any account of testimonial justice that implies the fairness/justice criteria must be abandoned, on pain of triviality.
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  47. Testimony and Grammatical Evidentials.Peter Van Elswyk - 2020 - In Miranda Fricker, Peter Graham, David Henderson, Nikolaj Jang Lee Linding Pedersen & Jeremy Wyatt (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Social Epistemology. Routledge. pp. 135-144.
    Unlike other sources of evidence like perception and memory, testimony is intimately related to natural language. That intimacy cannot be overlooked. In this chapter, I show how cross-linguistic considerations are relevant to the epistemology of testimony. I make my case with declaratives containing grammaticalized evidentials. My discussion has a negative and a positive part. For the negative part, it is argued that some definitions of testimony are mistaken because they do not apply to testimony offered by a declarative containing an (...)
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  48. Retraction and testimonial justification: a new problem for the assurance view.Matthew Vermaire - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (12):3959-3972.
    The Assurance View, as advanced by Angus Ross and Richard Moran, makes the epistemology of testimony a matter of interpersonal commitments and entitlements. More specifically, I argue, their position is best understood as claiming that for someone’s belief to be testimonially justified is for some speaker to bear illocutionary responsibility for its truth. With this understanding in hand, I present a problem for the view that has so far escaped attention, a problem deriving from the wide freedom we have to (...)
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  49. Reliabilism and the Testimony of Robots.Billy Wheeler - 2020 - Techné: Research in Philosophy and Technology 24 (3):332-356.
    We are becoming increasingly dependent on robots and other forms of artificial intelligence for our beliefs. But how should the knowledge gained from the “say-so” of a robot be classified? Should it be understood as testimonial knowledge, similar to knowledge gained in conversation with another person? Or should it be understood as a form of instrument-based knowledge, such as that gained from a calculator or a sundial? There is more at stake here than terminology, for how we treat objects as (...)
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  50. Trust in a Social and Digital World.Mark Alfano & Colin Klein - 2019 - Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective 1 (8):1-8.