The Self-undermining Objection to the Epistemology of Disagreement

Faith and Philosophy 30 (1):93-106 (2013)

Shawn Graves
University of Findlay
Disagreements about, within, and between religions are widespread. It’s no surprise, then, that there’s an enormous philosophical literature on religious diversity. But in recent years, philosophers working in mainstream epistemology have done a lot of work on disagreement in general. This work has focused in particular upon the epistemology of peer disagreement, i.e., disagreements between parties who are justifiably believed to be epistemic equals regarding the matter at hand. In this paper, I intend to defend a thesis in the epistemology of peer disagreement from a significant objection. The thesis I intend to defend is the Equal Weight View. The objection, pressed by philosophers such as Alvin Plantinga, Timothy O’Connor, Charles Taliaferro, Brian Weatherson, and Adam Elga, is that EWV is self-undermining. In short, I argue two things. First, I argue that EWV is not self-undermining. Second, I argue that even if it were, this would give us no reason to think that EWV is false since there are obviously true epistemic principles that self-undermine. The self-undermining objection to EWV fails.
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy and Religion
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ISBN(s) 0739-7046
DOI faithphil20133015
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Disagreement.Jonathan Matheson & Bryan Frances - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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