Synthese:1-25 (2017)

Abstract
Intellectual autonomy has long been identified as an epistemic virtue, one that has been championed influentially by Kant, Hume and Emerson. Manifesting intellectual autonomy, at least, in a virtuous way, does not require that we form our beliefs in cognitive isolation. Rather, as Roberts and Wood note, intellectually virtuous autonomy involves reliance and outsourcing to an appropriate extent, while at the same time maintaining intellectual self-direction. In this essay, I want to investigate the ramifications for intellectual autonomy of a particular kind of epistemic dependence: cognitive enhancement. Cognitive enhancements involve the use of technology and medicine to improve cognitive capacities in healthy individuals, through mechanisms ranging from smart drugs to brain-computer interfaces. With reference to case studies in bioethics, as well as the philosophy of mind and cognitive science, it is shown that epistemic dependence, in this extreme form, poses a prima facie threat to the retention of intellectual autonomy, specifically, by threatening to undermine our intellectual self-direction. My aim will be to show why certain kinds of cognitive enhancements are subject to this objection from self-direction, while others are not. Once this is established, we’ll see that even some extreme kinds of cognitive enhancement might be not merely compatible with, but constitutive of, virtuous intellectual autonomy.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2017, 2020
DOI 10.1007/s11229-017-1549-y
Options
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

The Extended Mind.Andy Clark & David J. Chalmers - 1998 - Analysis 58 (1):7-19.
What is Justified Belief?Alvin Goldman - 1979 - In George Pappas (ed.), Justification and Knowledge. Boston: D. Reidel. pp. 1-25.

View all 77 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Technological Seduction and Self-Radicalization.Mark Alfano, Joseph Adam Carter & Marc Cheong - 2018 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association (3):298-322.
Virtue Epistemology, Enhancement, and Control.J. AdamCarter - 2018 - Metaphilosophy 49 (3):283-304.
When is Epistemic Dependence Disvaluable?Benoit Gaultier - 2021 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 10 (3):178-187.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Testimony and Intellectual Autonomy.C. A. J. Coady - 2002 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (2):355-372.
Intellectual Humility as Attitude.Alessandra Tanesini - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 96 (2):399-420.
An Aristotelian Approach to Cognitive Enhancement.Lubomira V. Radoilska - 2010 - Journal of Value Inquiry 44 (3):365–375.
The Politics of Intellectual Self-Trust.Karen Jones - 2012 - Social Epistemology 26 (2):237-251.
Epistemic Situationism: An Extended Prolepsis.Mark Alfano - 2017 - In Mark Alfano & Abrol Fairweather (eds.), Epistemic Situationism. Oxford University Press.
Epistemic Merit, Autonomy, and Testimony.Jesús Vega Encabo - 2008 - Theoria: Revista de Teoría, Historia y Fundamentos de la Ciencia 23 (1):45-56.
Cognitive Disability in a Society of Equals.Jonathan Wolff - 2009 - Metaphilosophy 40 (3-4):402-415.

Analytics

Added to PP index
2017-08-31

Total views
186 ( #56,311 of 2,448,682 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
23 ( #30,425 of 2,448,682 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads

My notes