Review of Steven D. Hales' Book: Relativism and the Foundations of Philosophy [Book Review]

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF RESEARCH CULTURE SOCIETY 2 (1):200-204 (2018)
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Abstract

This review is a critical evaluation of the main points of Steven D. Hales’ significant book: Relativism and the Foundations of Philosophy. To that end, I will first summarize his major line of argument pointing out to the richness and significance of the book. After that, I will argue that Hales’ account of intuition is subject to the challenge shown by some recent works written on the topic, and that it postulates a concept of knowledge that opposes Gettier’s one, without arguing why it is so. And, I will show that except rational intuition, none of the methods adopted by Hales are adequate to acquire beliefs about philosophical propositions. Next, I will argue that his method of wide reflective equilibrium is committed to foundationalism and conservatism, and that all what his criticism of skepticism show is that skepticism is true. Also, I will try to show that his form of perspectival relativism is committed to the problem of infinitum; it is incompatible with his foundationalism. It is powerless regarding some forms of skepticism, sharing the same source with some others. It is not progressive, and not perspectival enough regarding Goldman’s view, naturalists’ view, and its alternatives. And, if it is perspectival enough, then it refutes itself.

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Manhal Hamdo
University of Delhi

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References found in this work

Philosophy Without Intuitions.Herman Cappelen - 2012 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press UK.
Is Justified True Belief Knowledge?Edmund Gettier - 1963 - Analysis 23 (6):121-123.
A theory of the good and the right.Richard B. Brandt - 1979 - Amherst, N.Y.: Prometheus Books.

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