Epistemic Value: The Insufficiency of Truth

American Philosophical Quarterly 54 (3):303-316 (2017)
Abstract
We are naturally inclined to judge that it is better to know that p than to merely truly believe that p. How to account for this intuition? In this paper, I examine Williamson, Goldman and Olsson, and Pritchard's answers, and agree with Pritchard that it cannot be consistently claimed that knowledge is epistemically superior to mere true belief, and that truth is the only finally valuable epistemic good. Contrary to Pritchard, I argue that the latter claim is deeply mistaken. I do so by showing that mere true beliefs have no epistemic value at all. I sketch the consequences of this point concerning the epistemic value of knowledge, and answer some objections to the thesis that mere true beliefs do not possess epistemic value.
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