Curious to Know

Episteme:1-15 (forthcoming)
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What is curiosity? An attractive option is that it is a desire to know. This analysis has been recently challenged by what I call interrogativism, the view that inquiring attitudes such as curiosity have questions rather than propositions as contents. In this paper, I defend the desire-to-know view, and make three contributions to the debate. First, I refine the view in a way that avoids the problems of its simplest version. Second, I present a new argument for the desire-to-know view that focuses on ascriptions of the form ‘S is curious to φ’, which, despite their prevalence, have been ignored in the literature. Third, I examine the central motivation for interrogativism—the argument from metacognition, according to which animals can be curious yet do not have the metacognitive capacities required by desires to know—and argue that it rests on questionable assumptions about desires and attitude ascriptions.

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Author's Profile

Eliran Haziza
Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Citations of this work

Norms of Inquiry.Eliran Haziza - 2023 - Philosophy Compass 18 (12):e12952.
Inquiring Attitudes and Erotetic Logic: Norms of Restriction and Expansion.Dennis Whitcomb & Jared Millson - forthcoming - Journal of the American Philosophical Association:1-23.
Inquiring and Making Sure.Eliran Haziza - forthcoming - Philosophical Topics.
Asking expresses a desire to know.Peter van Elswyk - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.

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References found in this work

Knowledge in a social world.Alvin I. Goldman - 1991 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Why Suspend Judging?Jane Friedman - 2017 - Noûs 51 (2):302-326.
The theory of epistemic rationality.Richard Foley - 1987 - Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Inquiry and Belief.Jane Friedman - 2017 - Noûs 53 (2):296-315.

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