Endorsement and assertion

Noûs (forthcoming)

Authors
Will Fleisher
Washington University in St. Louis
Abstract
Scientists, philosophers, and other researchers commonly assert their theories. This is surprising, as there are good reasons for skepticism about theories in cutting-edge research. I propose a new account of assertion in research contexts that vindicates these assertions. This account appeals to a distinct propositional attitude called endorsement, which is the rational attitude of committed advocacy researchers have to their theories. The account also appeals to a theory of conversational pragmatics known as the Question Under Discussion model, or QUD. Hence, I call the theory the EQUD model. Motivating this account is a recognition that the speech act of assertion has two roles to play in research contexts. The first is the advocacy role, in which researchers assert a theory in order to advocate for it. The second is the evidential role, which is used to add to the common stock of information available to a field of inquiry. The EQUD model provides an account of warranted assertion for both these roles in research contexts. This success provides support for the theory of endorsement. It also provides support for information updating accounts of assertion.
Keywords assertion  epistemology  inquiry  philosophy of language  speech acts
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DOI 10.1111/nous.12315
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References found in this work BETA

Knowledge and its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 64 (1):200-201.
Norms of Assertion.Jennifer Lackey - 2007 - Noûs 41 (4):594–626.
Assertion, Knowledge, and Context.Keith DeRose - 2002 - Philosophical Review 111 (2):167-203.
Epistemic Teleology and the Separateness of Propositions.Selim Berker - 2013 - Philosophical Review 122 (3):337-393.
Scorekeeping in a Language Game.David K. Lewis - 1979 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 8 (1):339--359.

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Citations of this work BETA

Representing Knowledge.Peter van Elswyk - forthcoming - The Philosophical Review.

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