Self-Knowledge and the Transparency of Belief

In Anthony Hatzimoysis (ed.), Self-Knowledge. Oxford University Press (2008)
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Abstract

In this paper, I argue that the method of transparency --determining whether I believe that p by considering whether p -- does not explain our privileged access to our own beliefs. Looking outward to determine whether one believes that p leads to the formation of a judgment about whether p, which one can then self-attribute. But use of this process does not constitute genuine privileged access to whether one judges that p. And looking outward will not provide for access to dispositional beliefs, which are arguably more central examples of belief than occurrent judgments. First, one’s dispositional beliefs as to whether p may diverge from the occurrent judgments generated by the method of transparency. Second, even in cases where these are reliably linked — e.g., in which one’s judgment that p derives from one’s dispositional belief that p — using the judgment to self-attribute the dispositional belief requires an ‘inward’ gaze.

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Brie Gertler
University of Virginia

Citations of this work

Self-Knowledge.Brie Gertler - 2015 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Acquaintance.Matt Duncan - 2021 - Philosophy Compass 16 (3):e12727.
Interpretivism and norms.Devin Sanchez Curry - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (4):905-930.
Credence: A Belief-First Approach.Andrew Moon & Elizabeth Jackson - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (5):652–669.

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References found in this work

Meditations on First Philosophy.René Descartes - 1984 [1641] - Ann Arbor: Caravan Books. Edited by Stanley Tweyman.
Folk psychology as simulation.Robert M. Gordon - 1986 - Mind and Language 1 (2):158-71.
The aim of belief.Ralph Wedgwood - 2002 - Philosophical Perspectives 16:267-97.
Précis of Authority and Estrangement: An Essay on Self‐Knowledge.Richard Moran - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (2):423-426.
The Possibility of Practical Reason.Thomas Pink - 2003 - Mind 112 (448):812-816.

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