Contextualism and the Epistemological Enterprise

Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 107 (1pt3):387-394 (2007)
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Abstract

Epistemic contextualism (EC) is primarily a semantic view, viz. the view that ‘knowledge’-ascriptions can change their contents with the conversational context. To be more precise, EC is the view that the predicate ‘know’ has an unstable Kaplan character, i.e. a character that does not map all contexts on the same content. According to EC, ‘know’ is thus an indexical expression. Notwithstanding this purely linguistic characterisation of EC, contextualists have traditionally argued that their views have considerable philosophical impact, this being due to the alleged fact that their linguistic views about ‘know’ provide the resources for a resolution of sceptical puzzles. In this paper I will address an objection to EC claiming that, as a linguistic view about the term ‘know’, EC cannot be of any epistemological significance.

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Michael Blome-Tillmann
McGill University

Citations of this work

Knowledge and Presuppositions.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2009 - Mind 118 (470):241 - 294.
Skepticism and Contextualism.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2018 - In Diego E. Machuca & Baron Reed (eds.), Skepticism: From Antiquity to the Present. New York, USA: Bloomsbury. pp. 620-633.
Ignorance and Epistemic Contextualism.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2016 - In Rik Peels & Martijn Blaauw (eds.), The Epistemic Dimensions of Ignorance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 96-113.

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References found in this work

Elusive Knowledge.David K. Lewis - 1996 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 74 (4):549 – 567.
Contextualism, Skepticism, and the Structure of Reasons.Stewart Cohen - 1999 - Philosophical Perspectives 13:57-89.
How to Be a Fallibilist.Stewart Cohen - 1988 - Philosophical Perspectives 2:91-123.
Elusive Knowledge.David Lewis - 1999 - In Keith DeRose & Ted A. Warfield (eds.), Skepticism: A Contemporary Reader. Oup Usa.

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