Authors
Masashi Kasaki
Hiroshima University
Abstract
Virtue epistemology has it that knowledge is a kind of success through ability, and explains the value of knowledge in terms of the general value of success through ability. However, Duncan Pritchard, in a series of recent writings, argues that knowledge is not merely a success through ability, and the virtue-theoretic explanation of the value of knowledge fails. He derives general claims about what he calls ‘environmental luck’ from certain examples, and uses them against virtue epistemology. First, I propose counterexamples to Pritchard’s general claims about environmental luck. Second, I offer a diagnosis of both Pritchard’s and my examples, according to which they differ as to how many abilities are responsible for the performance in question. Different structures of performance make for different conditions for success to be fully creditable to a subject. Once this is taken account of, virtue epistemology can deal with all the examples, while maintaining its main tenet that the value of knowledge is explained in terms of the value of success through ability. Third, I show that my response to Pritchard’s argument against virtue epistemology is more plausible then the ones offered by John Greco and Ernest Sosa
Keywords Virtue Epistemology  Environmental Luck
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DOI 10.5840/jpr20148419
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