Skepticism and the Value of Knowledge

In Chienkuo Mi Ruey-lin Chen (ed.), Naturalized Epistemology and Philosophy of Science (2007)
Authors
Patrick Hawley
University of Hong Kong
Abstract
The main claim of this essay is that knowledge is no more
valuable than lasting true belief.
This claim is surprising. Doesn't knowledge have a unique
and special value? If the main claim is correct and if, as it seems,
knowledge is not lasting true belief, then knowledge does not have a unique value:
in whatever way knowledge is valuable, lasting true belief is just as valuable.
However, this result does not show that knowledge is worthless, nor does it undermine
our knowledge gathering practices. There is, rather, a positive philosophical payoff:
skepticism about knowledge is defused. Assuming one can have lasting true belief,
then even if one cannot have knowledge, one can have something just as valuable.
.
Keywords skepticism  value of knowledge
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