Infinitism

Edited by Kurt Sylvan (University of Southampton, University of Southampton)
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  1. THE BECOMING OF THE ULTIMATE TRUTH.Jayarajan Kurunghat - manuscript
    A short book meant to take honest and determined seekers to the Ultimate Truth.The reality about (our) ‘presence’ is that it is the becoming of the Ultimate Truth it self. -/- .
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  2. Can Infinitists Handle the Finite Mind Objection and the Distinction Objection?Bin Zhao - forthcoming - Philosophia:1-17.
    This paper examines two objections to the infinitist theory of epistemic justification, namely “the finite mind objection” and “the distinction objection.” It criticizes Peter Klein’s response to the distinction objection and offers a more plausible response. It is then argued that this response is incompatible with Klein’s response to the finite mind objection. Infinitists, it would seem, cannot handle both objections when taken together.
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  3. On Knowing an Ineffable God Personally: A Study in the Joy of the Saints.David Worsley - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 12 (1):21.
    What might it mean for a person’s joy to be ‘complete’? Granting that such conditions obtain at the beatific vision, I suggest beatific enjoyment requires a specific kind of knowledge of God; namely, fundamental personal knowledge. However, attaining such personal knowledge necessitates the divine gifting of a special grace, that is, a power to know God’s infinite essence. Furthermore, this power, and so, this knowledge, can come in an infinite number of degrees. Granting this, one saint could come to a (...)
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  4. God, Personhood, and Infinity: Against a Hickian Argument.Mohammad Saleh Zarepour - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 12 (1):61.
    Criticizing Richard Swinburne’s conception of God, John Hick argues that God cannot be personal because infinity and personhood are mutually incompatible. An essential characteristic of a person, Hick claims, is having a boundary which distinguishes that person from other persons. But having a boundary is incompatible with being infinite. Infinite beings are unbounded. Hence God cannot be thought of as an infinite person. In this paper, I argue that the Hickian argument is flawed because boundedness is an equivocal notion: in (...)
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  5. Anaxagoras, the Thoroughgoing Infinitist: The Relation Between His Teachings on Multitude and on Heterogeneity.Miloš Arsenijević, Saša Popović & Miloš Vuletić - 2019 - European Journal of Analytic Philosophy 15 (1):35-70.
    In the analysis of Anaxagoras’ physics in view of the relation between his teachings on multitude and heterogeneity, two central questions emerge: 1) How can the structure of the universe considered purely mereo-topologically help us explain that at the first cosmic stage no qualitative difference is manifest in spite of the fact that the entire qualitative heterogeneity is supposedly already present there? 2) How can heterogeneity become manifest at the second stage, resulting from the noûs intervention, if according to fragment (...)
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  6. Infinitism and Scepticism.Tim Oakley - 2019 - Episteme 16 (1):108-118.
    Infinitism, in contrast to foundationalism and coherentism, claims that justification in any proposition requires the availability of an infinite chain of propositional reasons, each providing a justificatory reason for its successor in the chain. Both infinitists and some critics of the theory have at times noted the possibility that the theory may have sceptical consequences for doxastic justification. It is argued here that, for reasons that appear not to have been previously appreciated, sceptical results very definitely do follow from infinitism. (...)
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  7. The Reductio Argument Against Epistemic Infinitism.Tim Oakley - 2019 - Synthese 196 (9):3869-3887.
    Epistemic infinitism, advanced in different forms by Peter Klein, Scott Aikin, and David Atkinson and Jeanne Peijnenburg, is the theory that justification of a proposition for a person requires the availability to that person of an infinite, non-repeating chain of propositions, each providing a justifying reason for its successor in the chain. The reductio argument is the argument to the effect that infinitism has the consequence that no one is justified in any proposition, because there will be an infinite chain (...)
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  8. Fading Foundations: Probability and the Regress Problem.William Roche - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (274):212-215.
    Fading Foundations: Probability and the Regress Problem. By Atkinson David, Peijnenburg Jeanne.
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  9. Review of The New Wittgenstein-- Crary & Read Eds 403p (2000)(Review Revised 2019).Michael Starks - 2019 - In The Logical Structure of Human Behavior. Las Vegas, NV USA: Reality Press. pp. 328-336.
    Ludwig Wittgenstein is the most famous philosopher of modern times but very few understand his pioneering work and there has been a collective amnesia regarding him in recent decades. Most of the essays are new but some date as far back as 1979 and whether they give a new view of his ideas depends on one’s understanding of what he said. For me, the interpretations are not new and mostly just as confused as nearly all the other commentary on W (...)
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  10. Ad Infinitum: New Essays on Epistemological Infinitism. [REVIEW]Brandon Beasley - 2018 - Dialogue 57 (1):194-196.
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  11. Epistemic Infinitism and the Conditional Character of Inferential Justification.Erhan Demircioglu - 2018 - Synthese 195 (5):2313-2334.
    In this paper, I will present and defend an argument from the conditional character of inferential justification against the version of epistemic infinitism Klein advances. More specifically, after proposing a distinction between propositional and doxastic infinitism, which is based on a standard distinction between propositional and doxastic justification, I will describe in considerable detail the argument from conditionality, which is mainly an argument against propositional infinitism, and clarify some of its main underlying assumptions. There are various responses to be found (...)
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  12. Justification Épistémique.Arturs Logins - 2018 - L’Encyclopédie Philosophique (Version Grand Public).
    Certaines croyances sont justifiées tandis que d’autres ne le sont pas. Si je crois que la Terre est ronde, on peut considérer que ma croyance est justifiée, alors que si je crois qu’elle est plate, elle ne l’est pas. Qu’est-ce qui différencie les unes des autres ? Une croyance justifiée doit-elle toujours être fondée sur une autre croyance justifiée ? Comment pouvons-nous éviter la conclusion sceptique selon laquelle nous ne sommes pas justifiés à croire quoi que ce soit ? Ces (...)
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  13. Justification, Justifying, and Leite’s Localism.Timothy Perrine - 2018 - Acta Analytica 33 (4):505-524.
    In a series of papers, Adam Leite has developed a novel view of justification tied to being able to responsibly justify a belief. Leite touts his view as faithful to our ordinary practice of justifying beliefs, providing a novel response to an epistemological problem of the infinite regress, and resolving the “persistent interlocutor” problem. Though I find elements of Leite’s view of being able to justify a belief promising, I hold that there are several problems afflicting the overall picture of (...)
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  14. Informal Logic’s Infinite Regress: Inference Through a Looking-Glass.Gilbert Edward Plumer - 2018 - In Steve Oswald & Didier Maillat (eds.), Argumentation and Inference. Proceedings of the 2nd European Conference on Argumentation, Fribourg 2017, Vol. I. London, UK: College Publications. pp. 365-377.
    I argue against the skeptical epistemological view exemplified by the Groarkes that “all theories of informal argument must face the regress problem.” It is true that in our theoretical representations of reasoning, infinite regresses of self-justification regularly and inadvertently arise with respect to each of the RSA criteria for argument cogency (the premises are to be relevant, sufficient, and acceptable). But they arise needlessly, by confusing an RSA criterion with argument content, usually premise material.
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  15. Foundationalism with Infinite Regresses of Probabilistic Support.William Roche - 2018 - Synthese 195 (9):3899-3917.
    There is a long-standing debate in epistemology on the structure of justification. Some recent work in formal epistemology promises to shed some new light on that debate. I have in mind here some recent work by David Atkinson and Jeanne Peijnenburg, hereafter “A&P”, on infinite regresses of probabilistic support. A&P show that there are probability distributions defined over an infinite set of propositions {\ such that \ is probabilistically supported by \ for all i and \ has a high probability. (...)
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  16. On the Beginning of Time: A Reply to Wes Morriston Concerning the Existence of Actual Infinities.Andrew Loke - 2017 - In Paul Copan & William Lane Craig (eds.), The Kalām Cosmological Argument: Criticisms and Defenses. New York, NY, USA:
  17. Review of "Ad Infinitum: New Essays on Epistemological Infinitism", Edited by John Turri and Peter Klein. [REVIEW]Adam C. Podlaskowski - 2017 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 7 (2):141-145.
    This is a review of Turri and Klein's "Ad Infinitum: New Essays on Epistemological Infinitism".
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  18. A Note Concerning Infinite Regresses of Deferred Justification.Paul Thorn - 2017 - Philosophia 45 (1):349-357.
    An agent’s belief in a proposition, E0, is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification just in case the belief that E0 is justified, and the justification for believing E0 proceeds from an infinite sequence of propositions, E0, E1, E2, etc., where, for all n ≥ 0, En+1 serves as the justification for En. In a number of recent articles, Atkinson and Peijnenburg claim to give examples where a belief is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification. I (...)
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  19. On the Infinite God Objection: A Reply to Jacobus Erasmus and Anné Hendrik Verhoef.Andrew Loke - 2016 - Sophia 55 (2):263-272.
    Erasmus and Verhoef suggest that a promising response to the infinite God objection to the Kalām cosmological argument include showing that abstract objects do not exist; actually infinite knowledge is impossible; and redefining omniscience as : for any proposition p, if God consciously thinks about p, God will either accept p as true if and only if p is true, or accept p as false if and only if p is false. I argue that there is insufficient motivation for showing (...)
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  20. Ad Infinitum: New Essays on Epistemological Infinitism, Edited by Turri, John and Peter D. Klein: Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014, Pp. 262, £40. [REVIEW]Cei Maslen - 2016 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 94 (3):629-629.
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  21. Justification, Epistemic.Jamie Carlin Watson - 2016
    Epistemic Justification We often believe what we are told by our parents, friends, doctors, and news reporters. We often believe what we see, taste, and smell. We hold beliefs about the past, the present, and the future. Do we have a right to hold any of these beliefs? Are any supported by evidence? Should we … Continue reading Justification, Epistemic →.
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  22. Coherentism Via Graphs.Selim Berker - 2015 - Philosophical Issues 25 (1):322-352.
    Once upon a time, coherentism was the dominant response to the regress problem in epistemology, but in recent decades the view has fallen into disrepute: now almost everyone is a foundationalist (with a few infinitists sprinkled here and there). In this paper, I sketch a new way of thinking about coherentism, and show how it avoids many of the problems often thought fatal for the view, including the isolation objection, worries over circularity, and concerns that the concept of coherence is (...)
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  23. Arbitrary Foundations? On Klein’s Objection to Foundationalism.Coos Engelsma - 2015 - Acta Analytica 30 (4):389-408.
    This paper evaluates Peter Klein’s objection to foundationalism. According to Klein, foundationalism fails because it allows arbitrariness “at the base.” I first explain that this objection can be interpreted in two ways: either as targeting dialectical foundationalism or as targeting epistemic foundationalism. I then clarify Klein’s concept of arbitrariness. An assertion or belief is assumed to be arbitrary if and only if it lacks a reason that is “objectively and subjectively available.” Drawing on this notion, I evaluate Klein’s objection. I (...)
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  24. Infinitism.Peter Klein & John Turri - 2015 - Oxford Bibliographies.
    Infinitism, along with foundationalism and coherentism, is a logically possible solution to the epistemic regress problem. But unlike the other two views, infinitism has only been developed and defended as a plausible solution since the late 1990’s. Infinitists grant that although there is an ending point of any actual chain of cited reasons for a belief, no belief (including the last one cited) is fully justified until a reason for it is provided. In addition to differing with foundationalism about the (...)
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  25. Naive Infinitism: The Case for an Inconsistency Approach to Infinite Collections.Toby Meadows - 2015 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 56 (1).
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  26. Prospects for Moral Epistemic Infinitism.Scott F. Aikin - 2014 - Metaphilosophy 45 (2):172-181.
    This article poses two regresses for justification of moral knowledge and discusses three models for moral epistemic infinitism that arise. There are moral infinitisms dependent on empirical infinitism, what are called “piggyback” moral infinitisms. There are substantive empiricist moral infinitisms, requiring infinite chains of descriptive facts to justify normative rules. These empiricist infinitisms are developed either as infinitist egoisms or as infinitist sentimentalisms. And, finally, there are substantive rationalist moral infinitisms, requiring infinite chains of normative reasons to justify moral rules. (...)
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  27. Infinitism and Probabilistic Justification.Benjamin Bewersdorf - 2014 - Synthese 191 (4):691-699.
    According to infinitism, beliefs can be justified by an infinite chain of reasons. So far, infinitism has rarely been taken seriously and often even dismissed as inconsistent. However, Peijnenburg and Atkinson have recently argued that beliefs can indeed be justified by an infinite chain of reasons, if justification is understood probabilistically. In the following, I will discuss the formal result that has led to this conclusion. I will then introduce three probabilistic explications of justification and examine to which extent they (...)
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  28. On Peter Klein's Concept of Arbitrariness.Coos Engelsma - 2014 - Metaphilosophy 45 (2):192-200.
    According to Peter Klein, foundationalism fails because it allows a vicious form of arbitrariness. The present article critically discusses his concept of arbitrariness. It argues that the condition Klein takes to be necessary and sufficient for an epistemic item to be arbitrary is neither necessary nor sufficient. It also argues that Klein's concept of arbitrariness is not a concept of something that is obviously vicious. Even if Klein succeeds in establishing that foundationalism allows what he regards as arbitrariness, this does (...)
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  29. The Dialectics of Infinitism and Coherentism: Inferential Justification Versus Holism and Coherence.Frederik Herzberg - 2014 - Synthese 191 (4):701-723.
    This paper formally explores the common ground between mild versions of epistemological coherentism and infinitism; it proposes—and argues for—a hybrid, coherentist–infinitist account of epistemic justification. First, the epistemological regress argument and its relation to the classical taxonomy regarding epistemic justification—of foundationalism, infinitism and coherentism—is reviewed. We then recall recent results proving that an influential argument against infinite regresses of justification, which alleges their incoherence on account of probabilistic inconsistency, cannot be maintained. Furthermore, we prove that the Principle of Inferential Justification (...)
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  30. The Need for Justification.Jeanne Peijnenburg & David Atkinson - 2014 - Metaphilosophy 45 (2):201-210.
    Some series can go on indefinitely, others cannot, and epistemologists want to know in which class to place epistemic chains. Is it sensible or nonsensical to speak of a proposition or belief that is justified by another proposition or belief, ad infinitum? In large part the answer depends on what we mean by “justification.” Epistemologists have failed to find a definition on which everybody agrees, and some have even advised us to stop looking altogether. In spite of this, the present (...)
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  31. Probabilistic Regresses and the Availability Problem for Infinitism.Adam C. Podlaskowski & Joshua A. Smith - 2014 - Metaphilosophy 45 (2):211-220.
    Recent work by Peijnenburg, Atkinson, and Herzberg suggests that infinitists who accept a probabilistic construal of justification can overcome significant challenges to their position by attending to mathematical treatments of infinite probabilistic regresses. In this essay, it is argued that care must be taken when assessing the significance of these formal results. Though valuable lessons can be drawn from these mathematical exercises (many of which are not disputed here), the essay argues that it is entirely unclear that the form of (...)
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  32. Finite Reasons Without Foundations.Ted Poston - 2014 - Metaphilosophy 45 (2):182-191.
    This article develops a theory of reasons that has strong similarities to Peter Klein's infinitism. The view it develops, Framework Reasons, upholds Klein's principles of avoiding arbitrariness (PAA) and avoiding circularity (PAC) without requiring an infinite regress of reasons. A view of reasons that holds that the “reason for” relation is constrained by PAA and that PAC can avoid an infinite regress if the “reason for” relation is contextual. Moreover, such a view of reasons can maintain that skepticism is false (...)
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  33. Can Foundationalism Solve the Regress Problem?Declan Smithies - 2014 - In Ram Neta (ed.), Current Controversies in Epistemology. Routledge. pp. 73-94.
    This chapter has two goals: to motivate the foundationalist solution to the regress problem and to defend it against arguments from Sellars, BonJour and Klein. Both the motivation and the defence of foundationalism raise larger questions about the relationship between foundationalism and access internalism. I argue that foundationalism is not in conflict with access internalism, despite influential arguments to the contrary, and that access internalism in fact supplies a theoretical motivation for foundationalism. I conclude that foundationalism and access internalism form (...)
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  34. Creative Reasoning.John Turri - 2014 - In John Turri & Peter Klein (eds.), Ad infinitum: new essays on epistemological infinitism. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press. pp. 210-226.
    I defend the unpopular view that inference can create justification. I call this view inferential creationism. Inferential creationism has been favored by infinitists, who think that it supports infinitism. But it doesn’t. Finitists can and should accept creationism.
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  35. Ad Infinitum: New Essays on Epistemological Infinitism.John Turri & Peter D. Klein (eds.) - 2014 - Oxford University Press UK.
    Infinitism is an ancient view in epistemology about the structure of knowledge and epistemic justification, according to which there are no foundational reasons for belief. The view has never been popular, and is often associated with skepticism, but after languishing for centuries it has recently begun a resurgence. Ad Infinitum presents new work on the topic by leading epistemologists. They shed new light on infinitism's distinctive strengths and weaknesses, and address questions, new and old, about its account of justification, reasoning, (...)
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  36. Introduction to Infinitism.John Turri & Peter Klein - 2014 - In John Turri & Peter Klein (eds.), Ad infinitum: new essays on epistemological infinitism. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
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  37. Infinite Epistemic Regresses and Internalism.René Woudenberg & Ronald Meester - 2014 - Metaphilosophy 45 (2):221-231.
    This article seeks to state, first, what traditionally has been assumed must be the case in order for an infinite epistemic regress to arise. It identifies three assumptions. Next it discusses Jeanne Peijnenburg's and David Atkinson's setting up of their argument for the claim that some infinite epistemic regresses can actually be completed and hence that, in addition to foundationalism, coherentism, and infinitism, there is yet another solution (if only a partial one) to the traditional epistemic regress problem. The article (...)
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  38. Assertions Only?Ben Bronner - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):44-52.
    It is standardly believed that the only way to justify an assertion in the face of a challenge is by making another assertion. Call this claim ASSERTIONS ONLY. Besides its intrinsic interest, ASSERTIONS ONLY is relevant to deciding between competing views of the norms that govern reasoned discourse. ASSERTIONS ONLY is also a crucial part of the motivation for infinitism and Pyrrhonian skepticism. I suggest that ASSERTIONS ONLY is false: I can justify an assertion by drawing attention to something that (...)
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  39. The Consistency of Probabilistic Regresses: Some Implications for Epistemological Infinitism. [REVIEW]Frederik Herzberg - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (2):371-382.
    This note employs the recently established consistency theorem for infinite regresses of probabilistic justification (Herzberg in Stud Log 94(3):331–345, 2010) to address some of the better-known objections to epistemological infinitism. In addition, another proof for that consistency theorem is given; the new derivation no longer employs nonstandard analysis, but utilises the Daniell–Kolmogorov theorem.
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  40. Moral Applicability of Agrippa’s Trilemma.Noriaki Iwasa - 2013 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 13 (1):109-128.
    According to Agrippa's trilemma, an attempt to justify something leads to either infinite regress, circularity, or dogmatism. This essay examines whether and to what extent the trilemma applies to ethics. There are various responses to the trilemma, such as foundationalism, coherentism, contextualism, infinitism, and German idealism. Examining those responses, the essay shows that the trilemma applies at least to rational justification of contentful moral beliefs. This means that rationalist ethics based on any contentful moral belief are rationally unjustifiable.
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  41. Infinitism in Epistemology.Peter D. Klein & John Turri - 2013 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Infinitism in Epistemology. This article provides an overview of infinitism in epistemology. Infinitism is a family of views in epistemology about the structure of knowledge and epistemic justification. It contrasts naturally with coherentism and foundationalism. All three views agree that knowledge or justification requires an appropriately structured chain of reasons. What form may such a […].
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  42. The Emergence of Justification.Jeanne Peijnenburg & David Atkinson - 2013 - Philosophical Quarterly 63 (252):546-564.
    A major objection to epistemic infinitism is that it seems to make justification impossible. For if there is an infinite chain of reasons, each receiving its justification from its neighbour, then there is no justification to inherit in the first place. Some have argued that the objection arises from misunderstanding the character of justification. Justification is not something that one reason inherits from another; rather it gradually emerges from the chain as a whole. Nowhere however is it made clear what (...)
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  43. Infinitism and Agents Like Us: Reply to Turri.Joshua A. Smith & Adam C. Podlaskowski - 2013 - Logos and Episteme (1):125-128.
    In a recent paper, “Infinitism and Epistemic Normativity,” we have problematized the relationship between infinitism and epistemic normativity. Responding to our criticisms, John Turri has offered a defense of infinitism. In this paper, we argue that Turri’s defense fails, leaving infinitism vulnerable to the originally raised objections.
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  44. Infinitism, Finitude and Normativity.John Turri - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (3):791-795.
    I evaluate two new objections to an infinitist account of epistemic justification, and conclude that they fail to raise any new problems for infinitism. The new objections are a refined version of the finite-mind objection, which says infinitism demands more than finite minds can muster, and the normativity objection, which says infinitism entails that we are epistemically blameless in holding all our beliefs. I show how resources deployed in response to the most popular objection to infinitism, the original finite-mind objection, (...)
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  45. Is Justification Dialectical?Jan Willem Wieland - 2013 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 3 (3):182-201.
    Much of present-day epistemology is divided between internalists and externalists. Different as these views are, they have in common that they strip justification from its dialectical component in order to block the skeptic’s argument from disagreement. That is, they allow that one may have justified beliefs even if one is not able to defend it against challenges and resolve the disagreements about them. Lammenranta (2008, 2011a) recently argued that neither internalism nor externalism convinces if we consider the argument in its (...)
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  46. Infinite Regress Arguments.Jan Willem Wieland - 2013 - Acta Analytica 28 (1):95-109.
    Infinite regress arguments play an important role in many distinct philosophical debates. Yet, exactly how they are to be used to demonstrate anything is a matter of serious controversy. In this paper I take up this metaphilosophical debate, and demonstrate how infinite regress arguments can be used for two different purposes: either they can refute a universally quantified proposition (as the Paradox Theory says), or they can demonstrate that a solution never solves a given problem (as the Failure Theory says). (...)
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  47. Strong and Weak Regress Arguments.Jan Willem Wieland - 2013 - Logique and Analyse 224:439-461.
    In the literature, regress arguments often take one of two different forms: either they conclude that a given solution fails to solve any problem of a certain kind (the strong conclusion), or they conclude that a given solution fails to solve all problems of a certain kind (the weaker conclusion). This gives rise to a logical problem: do regresses entail the strong or the weaker conclusion, or none? In this paper I demonstrate that regress arguments can in fact take both (...)
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  48. Does Klein’s Infinitism Offer a Response to Agrippa’s Trilemma?Stephen Wright - 2013 - Synthese 190 (6):1113-1130.
    The regress of reasons threatens an epistemic agent’s right to claim that any beliefs are justified. In response, Peter Klein’s infinitism argues that an infinite series of supporting reasons of the right type not only is not vicious but can make for epistemic justification. In order to resist the sceptic, infinitism needs to provide reason to think that there is at least one justified belief in the world. Under an infinitist conception this involves showing that at least one belief is (...)
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  49. Pluralism in Probabilistic Justification.David Atkinson & Jeanne Peijnenburg - 2012 - In Probabilities, Laws, and Structures. pp. 75-86.
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  50. ``Infinitism, Holism, and the Regress Argument&Quot.Jonathan L. Kvanvig - 2012 - In Peter Klein & John Turri (eds.), Infinitism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
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