Conciliationism and merely possible disagreement

Synthese 193 (9):1-13 (2016)
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Abstract

Conciliationism faces a challenge that has not been satisfactorily addressed. There are clear cases of epistemically significant merely possible disagreement, but there are also clear cases where merely possible disagreement is epistemically irrelevant. Conciliationists have not yet accounted for this asymmetry. In this paper, we propose that the asymmetry can be explained by positing a selection constraint on all cases of peer disagreement—whether actual or merely possible. If a peer’s opinion was not selected in accordance with the proposed constraint, then it lacks epistemic significance. This allows us to distinguish the epistemically significant cases of merely possible disagreement from the insignificant ones.

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Author Profiles

Zach Barnett
National University of Singapore
Han Li
Rutgers University - Camden

Citations of this work

Disagreement.Jonathan Matheson & Bryan Frances - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
The challenge of heritability: genetic determinants of beliefs and their implications.Wade Munroe - 2020 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 63 (8):831-874.
Interworld Disagreement.Sebastiano Moruzzi & Giorgio Volpe - 2021 - Erkenntnis 86 (6):1585-1598.

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References found in this work

Epistemology of disagreement: The good news.David Christensen - 2007 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):187-217.
Reflection and disagreement.Adam Elga - 2007 - Noûs 41 (3):478–502.
Peer disagreement and higher order evidence.Thomas Kelly - 2010 - In Alvin I. Goldman & Dennis Whitcomb (eds.), Social Epistemology: Essential Readings. Oxford University Press. pp. 183--217.
A subjectivist’s guide to objective chance.David K. Lewis - 1980 - In Richard C. Jeffrey (ed.), Studies in Inductive Logic and Probability, Volume II. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 263-293.

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