A Refined Account of the "Epistemic Game": Epistemic Norms, Temptations, and Epistemic Coorperation

American Philosophical Quarterly 54 (4):383-396 (2017)
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Abstract

In "Epistemic Norms and the 'Epistemic Game' They Regulate", we advance a general case for the idea that epistemic norms regulating the production of beliefs might usefully be understood as social norms. There, we drew on the influential account of social norms developed by Cristina Bicchieri, and we managed to give a crude recognizable picture of important elements of what are recognizable as central epistemic norms. Here, we consider much needed elaboration, suggesting models that help one think about epistemic communities and, ultimately, the temptations confronted in one's epistemic life. We suggest that once "the epistemic game" is embedded into a wider set of gains and losses, one can understand the epistemic choice situation as a form of mixed-motive game. This allows one to understand epistemic games more straightforwardly using Bicchieri's framework for thinking about social norms. That is, once the choice situation denominated only in terms of classical epistemic gains and losses is embedded in a wider accounting of goods that may compete with the production of true beliefs, one can see how an agent's individual and community epistemic project can be furthered by social norms regulating epistemic practices. We recommend thinking of epistemic norms as analogous to social norms for hygiene.

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Author Profiles

David Henderson
University of Warwick
Peter Graham
University of California, Riverside

References found in this work

Thinking, Fast and Slow.Daniel Kahneman - 2011 - New York: New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
The Advancement of Science: Science without Legend, Objectivity without Illusions.Philip Kitcher - 1994 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 45 (3):929-932.
Epistemic Evaluation: Purposeful Epistemology.David K. Henderson & John Greco (eds.) - 2015 - Oxford: Oxford University Press UK.
Motivated contextualism.David Henderson - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 142 (1):119 - 131.

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