Defending doxastic evidence dualism

E. J. Coffman
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
‘Doxastic Evidence Dualism’ is the view that both known and nonknown beliefs can qualify as evidence. In this paper, I defend Doxastic Evidence Dualism (‘DED’) against several recent arguments for conclusions antithetical to it. I begin by motivating my project and distinguishing its focus from another current debate about the nature of evidence. I then evaluate five anti-DED arguments recently developed by Timothy Williamson and Jonathan Sutton. Two of these arguments—the ones due to Williamson—are explicitly anti-DED, aiming to establish that all doxastic evidence is knowledge (‘DE=K’). The remaining three arguments, due to Sutton, are implicitly anti-DED: the conclusion they aim to establish entails DE=K when combined with two additional, highly plausible claims. I show that all of these arguments fail. Along the way, I present novel arguments concerning the epistemic requirements for proper assertion, and the logic of certain familiar locutions involving the concept of evidence.
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