Philosophical Studies 178 (8):2509-2533 (2021)
AbstractFormal models of appearance and reality have proved fruitful for investigating structural properties of perceptual knowledge. This paper applies the same approach to epistemic justification. Our central goal is to give a simple account of The Preface, in which justified belief fails to agglomerate. Following recent work by a number of authors, we understand knowledge in terms of normality. An agent knows p iff p is true throughout all relevant normal worlds. To model The Preface, we appeal to the normality of error. Sometimes, it is more normal for reality and appearance to diverge than to match. We show that this simple idea has dramatic consequences for the theory of knowledge and justification. Among other things, we argue that a proper treatment of The Preface requires a departure from the internalist idea that epistemic justification supervenes on the appearances and the widespread idea that one knows most when free from error.
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Citations of this work
Degrees of Assertability.Sam Carter - 2022 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 104 (1):19-49.
Counterfactual Contamination.Simon Goldstein & John Hawthorne - 2022 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 100 (2):262-278.
Knowledge from multiple experiences.Simon Goldstein & John Hawthorne - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 179 (4):1341-1372.
References found in this work
Knowledge and Its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 70 (2):452-458.
Probability and the Logic of Rational Belief.Henry E. Kyburg Jr - 1961 - Middletown, CT, USA: Wesleyan University Press.
Between Probability and Certainty: What Justifies Belief.Martin Smith - 2016 - Oxford University Press UK.