Permissive Rationality and Sensitivity

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (2):342-370 (2017)
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Abstract

Permissivism about rationality is the view that there is sometimes more than one rational response to a given body of evidence. In this paper I discuss the relationship between permissivism, deference to rationality, and peer disagreement. I begin by arguing that—contrary to popular opinion—permissivism supports at least a moderate version of conciliationism. I then formulate a worry for permissivism. I show that, given a plausible principle of rational deference, permissive rationality seems to become unstable and to collapse into unique rationality. I conclude with a formulation of a way out of this problem on behalf of the permissivist.

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Ben Levinstein
University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

Citations of this work

Evidence: A Guide for the Uncertain.Kevin Dorst - 2020 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (3):586-632.
The Uniqueness Thesis.Matthew Kopec & Michael G. Titelbaum - 2016 - Philosophy Compass 11 (4):189-200.
Permissivism and the Value of Rationality: A Challenge to the Uniqueness Thesis.Miriam Schoenfield - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (2):286-297.
Higher-order uncertainty.Kevin Dorst - 2019 - In Mattias Skipper & Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen (eds.), Higher-Order Evidence: New Essays. Oxford University Press.

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References found in this work

Logical Foundations of Probability.Rudolf Carnap - 1950 - Chicago, IL, USA: Chicago University of Chicago Press.
Epistemology of disagreement: The good news.David Christensen - 2007 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):187-217.
Reflection and disagreement.Adam Elga - 2007 - Noûs 41 (3):478–502.
A subjectivist’s guide to objective chance.David K. Lewis - 1980 - In Richard C. Jeffrey (ed.), Studies in Inductive Logic and Probability, Volume II. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 263-293.

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