Acting for reasons, apt action, and knowledge

Synthese 190 (17):3865-3888 (2013)
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Abstract

I argue for the view that there are important similarities between knowledge and acting for a normative reason. I interpret acting for a normative reason in terms of Sosa’s notion of an apt performance. Actions that are done for a normative reason are normatively apt actions. They are in accordance with a normative reason because of a competence to act in accordance with normative reasons. I argue that, if Sosa’s account of knowledge as apt belief is correct, this means that acting for a normative reason is in many respects similar to knowledge. In order to strengthen Sosa’s account of knowledge, I propose to supplement it with an appeal to sub-competences. This clarifies how this account can deal with certain Gettier cases, and it helps to understand how exactly acting for a normative reason is similar to apt belief

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Susanne Mantel
Universität des Saarlandes

Citations of this work

Stop Making Sense? On a Puzzle about Rationality.Littlejohn Clayton - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research:257-272.
How and Why Knowledge is First.Clayton Littlejohn - 2017 - In J. Adam Carter, Emma C. Gordon & Benjamin W. Jarvis (eds.), Knowledge First: Approaches in Epistemology and Mind. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 19-45.
Fake Barns and false dilemmas.Clayton Littlejohn - 2014 - Episteme 11 (4):369-389.
Veritism Unswamped.Kurt Sylvan - 2018 - Mind 127 (506):381-435.
Evidence and its Limits.Clayton Littlejohn - 2018 - In Conor McHugh, Jonathan Way & Daniel Whiting (eds.), Normativity: Epistemic and Practical. Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.

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References found in this work

Knowledge and its limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - New York: Oxford University Press.
What we owe to each other.Thomas Scanlon - 1998 - Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press.
The moral problem.Michael Smith - 1994 - Cambridge, Mass., USA: Blackwell.
Is Justified True Belief Knowledge?Edmund Gettier - 1963 - Analysis 23 (6):121-123.

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