Doxastic permissiveness and the promise of truth

Synthese 194 (12):4897-4912 (2017)
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The purpose of this paper is to challenge what is often called the “Uniqueness” thesis. According to this thesis, given one’s total evidence, there is a unique rational doxastic attitude that one can take to any proposition. It is sensible for defenders of Uniqueness to commit to an accompanying principle that: when some agent A has equal epistemic reason both to believe that p and to believe that not p, the unique epistemically rational doxastic attitude for A to adopt with respect to whether p is the suspension of judgment. In this paper, I offer a case wherein the agent has equal epistemic reason both to believe that p and to believe that not p, but the agent is not epistemically required to suspend judgment about whether p. Furthermore, the case is such that there seems to be no uniquely rational attitude for the agent to adopt.

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J. Drake
Creighton University

Citations of this work

Surprising Suspensions: The Epistemic Value of Being Ignorant.Christopher Willard-Kyle - 2021 - Dissertation, Rutgers University - New Brunswick
Against the Doctrine of Infallibility.Christopher Willard-Kyle - 2021 - Philosophical Quarterly 71 (4):pqaa082.
Evidence and Self-Fulfilling Belief.Gregory Antill - 2019 - American Philosophical Quarterly 56 (4):319-330.

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References found in this work

Epistemology of Disagreement: The Good News.David Christensen - 2007 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):187-217.
Reflection and Disagreement.Adam Elga - 2007 - Noûs 41 (3):478–502.
Peer Disagreement and Higher Order Evidence.Thomas Kelly - 2010 - In Alvin I. Goldman & Dennis Whitcomb (eds.), Social Epistemology: Essential Readings. Oxford University Press. pp. 183--217.
From Normativity to Responsibility.Joseph Raz - 2011 - Oxford University Press.

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