Impurism, Practical Reasoning, and the Threshold Problem

Noûs 47 (1):179-192 (2013)
Jessica Brown
University of St. Andrews
I consider but reject one broad strategy for answering the threshold problem for fallibilist accounts of knowledge, namely what fixes the degree of probability required for one to know? According to the impurist strategy to be considered, the required degree of probability is fixed by one's practical reasoning situation. I distinguish two different ways to implement the suggested impurist strategy. According to the Relevance Approach, the threshold for a subject to know a proposition at a time is determined by the practical reasoning situations she is then in to which that particular proposition is relevant. According to the Unity Approach, the threshold for a subject to know any proposition whatsoever at a time is determined by a privileged practical reasoning situation she then faces, most plausibly the highest stakes practical reasoning situation she is then in. I argue that neither way of implementing the impurist strategy succeeds and so impurism does not offer a satisfactory response to the threshold problem
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DOI 10.1111/nous.12008
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References found in this work BETA

Knowledge and Lotteries.John Hawthorne - 2003 - Oxford University Press.
Knowledge and Practical Interests.Jason Stanley - 2005 - Oxford University Press.
Belief's Own Ethics.J. Adler - 2002 - MIT Press.
Knowledge and Action.John Hawthorne & Jason Stanley - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (10):571-590.

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Citations of this work BETA

Why Purists Should Be Infallibilists.Michael Hannon - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-16.
Games, Beliefs and Credences.Brian James Weatherson - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 92 (2):209-236.
Knowledge and Availability.Alexander Dinges - 2018 - Philosophical Psychology 31 (4):554-573.

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