Epistemic self-indulgence

Metaphilosophy 41 (1-2):214-234 (2010)
Authors
Heather Battaly
University of Connecticut
Abstract
I argue in this essay that there is an epistemic analogue of moral self-indulgence. Section 1 analyzes Aristotle's notion of moral temperance, and its corresponding vices of self-indulgence and insensibility. Section 2 uses Aristotle's notion of moral self-indulgence as a model for epistemic self-indulgence. I argue that one is epistemically self-indulgent only if one either : (ESI1) desires, consumes, and enjoys appropriate and inappropriate epistemic objects; or (ESI2) desires, consumes, and enjoys epistemic objects at appropriate and inappropriate times; or (ESI3) desires and enjoys epistemic objects too frequently, or to an inappropriately high degree, or consumes too much of them. We need not look far to locate the epistemically self-indulgent: philosophers, especially skeptics, are likely candidates.
Keywords Aristotle  epistemic vice  insensibility  epistemic virtue  moral virtue  epistemic treats  virtue epistemology  self‐indulgence  moral vice  temperance
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DOI 10.1111/j.1467-9973.2009.01619.x
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