Disagreeing with Confidence

Theoria 83 (4):419-439 (2017)
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Abstract

Does having an initially high level of justified confidence in a belief vindicate remaining steadfast in the face of disagreement? According to one prominent view in the literature, namely Jennifer Lackey's justificationist position, the answer is yes so long as one also has personal information that provides a symmetry-breaker. In this article, I raise a problem for the justificationist view. On the most straightforward reading of the justificationist position, personal information always provides a symmetry-breaker in a peer dispute over a belief in which one has high justified confidence. However, this position is implausibly strong because it renders epistemically permissible a dogmatic attitude in a relevant set of peer disagreements. Alternatively, weaker readings of the view fail to provide a perspicuous account of when high justified confidence matters in a disagreement.

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Brian Besong
Saint Francis University

Citations of this work

Disagreement, Dogmatism, and the Bounds of Philosophy. [REVIEW]Nick Hughes - 2019 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 27 (4):591-596.
The Method of Cases in Context. [REVIEW]Alison Springle - 2019 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 27 (4):597-608.

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References found in this work

The epistemic significance of disagreement.Thomas Kelly - 2019 - In Jeremy Fantl, Matthew McGrath & Ernest Sosa (eds.), Contemporary epistemology: an anthology. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. pp. 167-196.
An Essay Concerning Human Understanding.John Locke - 1979 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 169 (2):221-222.
Skepticism and the Veil of Perception.Michael Huemer - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (1):234-237.
Knowledge: Undefeated justified true belief.Keith Lehrer & Thomas Paxson - 1969 - Journal of Philosophy 66 (8):225-237.

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