Erkenntnis 83 (4):773-791 (2018)

Katherine Dormandy
University of Innsbruck
Sometimes it is epistemically beneficial to form a belief on authority. When you do, what happens to other reasons you have for that belief? Linda Zagzebski’s total-preemption view says that these reasons are “preempted”: you still have them, but you do not use them to support your belief. I argue that this situation is problematic, because having reasons for a belief while not using them forfeits you doxastic justification. I present an alternative account of belief on authority, the proper-basing view, which enables the agent to base her belief on as many reasons as she has. A salient result is that the notion of a preemptive reason, useful though it may be in accounting for acting on authority, does not have any place in an account of believing on authority or in epistemology more generally.
Keywords epistemic authority  epistemic basing  social epistemology  expertise
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s10670-017-9913-3
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 71,489
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

Knowledge and the Flow of Information.F. Dretske - 1989 - Trans/Form/Ação 12:133-139.
Reflection and Disagreement.Adam Elga - 2007 - Noûs 41 (3):478–502.
The morality of freedom.J. Raz - 1988 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 178 (1):108-109.

View all 27 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Epistemological Problems of Testimony.Jonathan E. Adler - 2006 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

View all 9 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Zagzebski on Authority and Preemption in the Domain of Belief.Arnon Keren - 2014 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 6 (4):61-76.
Counterfactuals and Epistemic Basing Relations.Patrick Bondy - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (4):542-569.
Are Epistemic Reasons Ever Reasons to Promote?Clayton Littlejohn - 2013 - Logos and Episteme 4 (3):353-360.
Can the Aim of Belief Ground Epistemic Normativity?Charles Côté-Bouchard - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (12):3181-3198.
Self-Knowledge and Communication.Johannes Roessler - 2015 - Philosophical Explorations 18 (2):153-168.
Authority, Accountability, and Preemption.Stephen Darwall - 2011 - Jurisprudence 2 (1):103-119.


Added to PP index

Total views
79 ( #148,382 of 2,520,788 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
11 ( #66,706 of 2,520,788 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes