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Certainty, a Refutation of Scepticism

University of Minnesota Press (1981)

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  1. Knowledge and Certainty.Jason Stanley - 2008 - Philosophical Issues 18 (1):35-57.
    This paper is a companion piece to my earlier paper “Fallibilism and Concessive Knowledge Attributions”. There are two intuitive charges against fallibilism. One is that it countenances the truth (and presumably acceptability) of utterances of sentences such as “I know that Bush is a Republican, though it might be that he is not a Republican”. The second is that it countenances the truth (and presumably acceptability) of utterances of sentences such as “I know that Bush is a Republican, even though (...)
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  • What's Wrong with Moore's Argument?James Pryor - 2004 - Philosophical Issues 14 (1):349–378.
    Something about this argument sounds funny. As we’ll see, though, it takes some care to identify exactly what Moore has done wrong. Iwill assume that Moore knows premise (2) to be true. One could inquire into how he knows it, and whether that knowledge can be defeated; but Iwon’t. I’ll focus instead on what epistemic relations Moore has to premise (1) and to his conclusion (3). It may matter which epistemic relations we choose to consider. Some philosophers will diagnose Moore’s (...)
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  • What Moore’s Paradox Is About.Claudio De Almeida - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (1):33-58.
    On the basis of arguments showing that none of the most influential analyses of Moore’s paradox yields a successful resolution of the problem, a new analysis of it is offered. It is argued that, in attempting to render verdicts of either inconsistency or self-contradiction or self-refutation, those analyses have all failed to satisfactorily explain why a Moore-paradoxical proposition is such that it cannot be rationally believed. According to the proposed solution put forward here, a Moore-paradoxical proposition is one for which (...)
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  • On Synchronic Dogmatism.Rodrigo Borges - 2015 - Synthese 192 (11):3677-3693.
    Saul Kripke argued that the requirement that knowledge eliminate all possibilities of error leads to dogmatism . According to this view, the dogmatism puzzle arises because of a requirement on knowledge that is too strong. The paper argues that dogmatism can be avoided even if we hold on to the strong requirement on knowledge. I show how the argument for dogmatism can be blocked and I argue that the only other approach to the puzzle in the literature is mistaken.
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  • Defeasibility and Gettierization: A Reminder.Claudio de Almeida & J. R. Fett - 2016 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 94 (1):152-169.
    For some of us, the defeasibility theory of knowledge remains the most plausible approach to the Gettier Problem. Epistemological fashion and faded memories notwithstanding, persuasive objections to the theory are very hard to find. The most impressive of those objections to the theory that have hitherto gone unanswered are examined and rejected here. These are objections put forward by Richard Feldman, Richard Foley, and John Turri. While these are all interesting, the objection recently put forward by Turri is, we think, (...)
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  • Three Kinds of Reliabilism.Frank Hofmann - 2013 - Philosophical Explorations 16 (1):59 - 80.
    I distinguish between three kinds of reliabilism for epistemic justification, namely, pure reliabilism, evidential reliabilism, and reasons reliabilism, and I argue for reasons reliabilism. Pure reliabilism and evidential reliabilism are plagued, most importantly, by the generality problem, and they cannot deal adequately with defeater phenomena. One can avoid these problems only by jettisoning the idea of process reliability. The truth connection ? which is essential for any kind of reliabilism ? has to be provided in an altogether different way, namely, (...)
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  • Deductive Justification.Catherine M. Canary & Douglas Odegard - 1989 - Dialogue 28 (2):305-.
  • The Skeptic and the Dogmatist.James Pryor - 2000 - Noûs 34 (4):517–549.
    Consider the skeptic about the external world. Let’s straightaway concede to such a skeptic that perception gives us no conclusive or certain knowledge about our surroundings. Our perceptual justification for beliefs about our surroundings is always defeasible—there are always possible improvements in our epistemic state which would no longer support those beliefs. Let’s also concede to the skeptic that it’s metaphysically possible for us to have all the experiences we’re now having while all those experiences are false. Some philosophers dispute (...)
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  • Epistemic Contextualism.Antonia Barke - 2004 - Erkenntnis 61 (2-3):353-373.
    Any contextualist approach to knowledge has to provide a plausible definition of the concept of context and spell out the mechanisms of context changes. Since it is the dynamics of context change that carry the main weight of the contextualist position, not every mechanism will be capable of filling that role. In particular, I argue that one class of mechanisms that is most popularly held to account for context changes, namely those that arise out of shifts of conversational parameters in (...)
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  • One Wage of Unknowability.Dennis Whitcomb - 2013 - Synthese 190 (3):339-352.
    Suppose for reductio that I know a proposition of the form p and I don’t know p . Then by the factivity of knowledge and the distribution of knowledge over conjunction, I both know and do not know p ; which is impossible. Propositions of the form p and I don’t know p are therefore unknowable. Their particular kind of unknowability has been widely discussed and applied to such issues as the realism debate. It hasn’t been much applied to theories (...)
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  • How Hard Are the Sceptical Paradoxes?Alex Byrne - 2004 - Noûs 38 (2):299–325.
    The sceptic about the external world presents us with a paradox: an apparently acceptable argument for an apparently unacceptable conclusion—that we do not know anything about the external world. Some paradoxes, for instance the liar and the sorites, are very hard. The defense of a purported solution to either of these two inevitably deploys the latest in high-tech philosophical weaponry. On the other hand, some paradoxes are not at all hard, and may be resolved without much fuss. They do not (...)
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  • Fact-Tracking Belief and the Backward Clock: A Reply to Adams, Barker and Clarke.John N. Williams - 2018 - Manuscrito 41 (3):29-50.
    In “The Backward Clock, Truth-Tracking, and Safety”, Neil Sinhababu and I gave Backward Clock, a counterexample to Robert Nozick’s truth-tracking analysis of knowledge. In “Knowledge as Fact-Tracking True Belief”, Fred Adams, John Barker and Murray Clarke propose that a true belief constitutes knowledge if and only if it is based on reasons that are sensitive to the fact that makes it true, that is, reasons that wouldn’t obtain if the belief weren’t true. They argue that their analysis evades Backward Clock. (...)
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  • Error and Doubt.Douglas Odegard - 1993 - Philosophia 22 (3-4):341-359.
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  • Foundationalism, Epistemic Dependence, and Defeasibility.Robert Audi - 1983 - Synthese 55 (1):119 - 139.
    This paper is an examination of modest foundationalism in relation to some important criteria of epistemic dependence. The paper distinguishes between causal and epistemic dependence and indicates how each might be related to reasons. Four kinds of reasons are also distinguished: reasons to believe, reasons one has for believing, reasons for which one believes, and reasons why one believes. In the light of all these distinctions, epistemic dependence is contrasted with defeasibility, and it is argued that modest foundationalism is not (...)
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  • Contextualism and the Problem of the External World.Ram Neta - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (1):1–31.
    A skeptic claims that I do not have knowledge of the external world. It has been thought that the skeptic reaches this conclusion because she employs unusually stringent standards for knowledge. But the skeptic does not employ unusually high standards for knowledge. Rather, she employs unusually restrictive standards of evidence. Thus, her claim that we lack knowledge of the external world is supported by considerations that would equally support the claim that we lack evidence for our beliefs about the external (...)
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  • Intention, Cognitive Commitment, and Planning.Robert Audi - 1991 - Synthese 86 (3):361-378.
    This paper defends a cognitive-motivational account of intending against recent criticism by J. Garcia, connects intending with a number of other concepts important in the theory of action — including decison, volition, and planning — and explores some principles of intention transfer construed as counterparts of epistemic principles governing closure for belief and justification. Several routes to intention formation are described; the role of intentions in planning is examined; and a holistic conception of intention formation and change is stressed. The (...)
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  • Epistemic Closure, Skepticism and Defeasibility.Claudio Almeida - 2012 - Synthese 188 (2):197-215.
    Those of us who have followed Fred Dretske's lead with regard to epistemic closure and its impact on skepticism have been half-wrong for the last four decades. But those who have opposed our Dretskean stance, contextualists in particular, have been just wrong. We have been half-right. Dretske rightly claimed that epistemic status is not closed under logical implication. Unlike the Dretskean cases, the new counterexamples to closure offered here render every form of contextualist pro-closure maneuvering useless. But there is a (...)
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  • Epistemology Factualized: New Contractarian Foundations for Epistemology.Ram Neta - 2006 - Synthese 150 (2):247-280.
    Many epistemologists are interested in offering a positive account of how it is that many of our common sense beliefs enjoy one or another positive epistemological status (e.g., how they are warranted, justified, reasonable, or what have you). A number of philosophers, under the influence of Wittgenstein and/or J. L. Austin, have argued that this enterprise is misconceived. The most effective version of this argument is to be found in Mark Kaplan’s paper “Epistemology on Holiday”. After explaining what this criticism (...)
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  • Knowing That There is No Demon.Douglas Odegard - 1994 - Theoria 60 (2):81-98.
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  • Intuitive Expertise and Intuitions About Knowledge.Joachim Horvath & Alex Wiegmann - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (10):2701-2726.
    Experimental restrictionists have challenged philosophers’ reliance on intuitions about thought experiment cases based on experimental findings. According to the expertise defense, only the intuitions of philosophical experts count—yet the bulk of experimental philosophy consists in studies with lay people. In this paper, we argue that direct strategies for assessing the expertise defense are preferable to indirect strategies. A direct argument in support of the expertise defense would have to show: first, that there is a significant difference between expert and lay (...)
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  • Closure, Defeasibility and Conclusive Reasons.Claudio de Almeida - 2007 - Acta Analytica 22 (4):301 - 319.
    It is argued, on the basis of new counterexamples, that neither knowledge nor epistemic justification (or “epistemic rationality”) can reasonably be thought to be closed under logical implication. The argument includes an attempt to reconcile the fundamental intuitions of the opposing parties in the debate.
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  • Introspection and Inference.Nicholas Silins - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (2):291-315.
    In this paper I develop the idea that, by answering the question whether p, you can answer the question whether you believe that p. In particular, I argue that judging that p is a fallible yet basic guide to whether one believes that p. I go on to defend my view from an important skeptical challenge, according to which my view would make it too easy to reject skeptical hypotheses about our access to our minds. I close by responding to (...)
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  • In Defense of Relativism.Joseph Margolis - 1988 - Social Epistemology 2 (3):201 – 225.
  • What Moore's Paradox Is About.Claudio Almeida - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 62 (1):33 - 58.
    On the basis of arguments showing that none of the most influential analyses of Moore's paradox yields a successful resolution of the problem, a new analysis of it is offered. It is argued that, in attempting to render verdicts of either inconsistency or self-contradiction or self-refutation, those analyses have all failed to satisfactorily explain why a Moore-paradoxical proposition is such that it cannot be rationally believed. According to the proposed solution put forward here, a Moore-paradoxical proposition is one for which (...)
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  • Solving the Moorean Puzzle.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (2):493-514.
    This article addresses and resolves an epistemological puzzle that has attracted much attention in the recent literature—namely, the puzzle arising from Moorean anti-sceptical reasoning and the phenomenon of transmission failure. The paper argues that an appealing account of Moorean reasoning can be given by distinguishing carefully between two subtly different ways of thinking about justification and evidence. Once the respective distinctions are in place we have a simple and straightforward way to model both the Wrightean position of transmission failure and (...)
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  • Transmission Failure Failure.Nicholas Silins - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 126 (1):71-102.
    I set out the standard view about alleged examples of failure of transmission of warrant, respond to two cases for the view, and argue that the view is false. The first argument for the view neglects the distinction between believing a proposition on the basis of a justification and merely having a justification to believe a proposition. The second argument for the view neglects the position that one's justification for believing a conclusion can be one's premise for the conclusion, rather (...)
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  • Quiddistic Knowledge.Jonathan Schaffer - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 123 (1-2):1-32.
    Is the relation between properties and the causal powers they confer necessary, or contingent? Necessary, says Sydney Shoemaker, on pain of skepticism about the properties. Contingent, says David Lewis, swallowing the skeptical conclusion. I shall argue that Lewis is right about the metaphysics, but that Shoemaker and Lewis are wrong about the epistemology. Properties have intrinsic natures (quiddities), which we can know.
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  • Hope, Knowledge, and Blindspots.Jordan Dodd - 2017 - Synthese 194 (2):531-543.
    Roy Sorensen introduced the concept of an epistemic blindspot in the 1980s. A proposition is an epistemic blindspot for some individual at some time if and only if that proposition is consistent but unknowable by that individual at that time. In the first half of this paper, I extend Sorensen work on blindspots by arguing that there exist blindspots that essentially involve hopes. In the second half, I show how such blindspots can contribute to and impair different pursuits of self-understanding. (...)
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  • Epistemic Circularity Squared? Skepticism About Common Sense.Baron Reed - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (1):186–197.
    Epistemic circularity occurs when a subject forms the belief that a faculty F is reliable through the use of F. Although this is often thought to be vicious, externalist theories generally don't rule it out. For some philosophers, this is a reason to reject externalism. However, Michael Bergmann defends externalism by drawing on the tradition of common sense in two ways. First, he concedes that epistemically circular beliefs cannot answer a subject's doubts about her cognitive faculties. But, he argues, subjects (...)
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  • Closure, Defeasibility and Conclusive Reasons.Claudio Almeida - 2007 - Acta Analytica 22 (4):301-319.
    It is argued, on the basis of new counterexamples, that neither knowledge nor epistemic justification (or epistemic rationality ) can reasonably be thought to be closed under logical implication. The argument includes an attempt to reconcile the fundamental intuitions of the opposing parties in the debate.
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  • The Epistemic Virtues of Consistency.Sharon Ryan - 1996 - Synthese 109 (2):121-141.
    The lottery paradox has been discussed widely. The standard solution to the lottery paradox is that a ticket holder is justified in believing each ticket will lose but the ticket holder is also justified in believing not all of the tickets will lose. If the standard solution is true, then we get the paradoxical result that it is possible for a person to have a justified set of beliefs that she knows is inconsistent. In this paper, I argue that the (...)
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