In defence of dogmatism

Philosophical Studies 172 (1):261-282 (2015)
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Abstract

According to Jim Pryor’s dogmatism, when you have an experience with content p, you often have prima facie justification for believing p that doesn’t rest on your independent justification for believing any proposition. Although dogmatism has an intuitive appeal and seems to have an antisceptical bite, it has been targeted by various objections. This paper principally aims to answer the objections by Roger White according to which dogmatism is inconsistent with the Bayesian account of how evidence affects our rational credences. If this were true, the rational acceptability of dogmatism would be seriously questionable. I respond that these objections don’t get off the ground because they assume that our experiences and our introspective beliefs that we have experiences have the same evidential force, whereas the dogmatist is uncommitted to this assumption. I also consider the question whether dogmatism has an antisceptical bite. I suggest that the answer turns on whether or not the Bayesian can determine the priors of hypotheses and conjectures on the grounds of their extra-empirical virtues. If the Bayesian can do so, the thesis that dogmatism has an antisceptical bite is probably false.

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Luca Moretti
University of Eastern Piedmont

Citations of this work

Phenomenal Conservatism.Luca Moretti - 2015 - Analysis 75 (2):296-309.
Entitlement: The Basis for Empirical Epistemic Warrant.Tyler Burge - 2020 - In Peter Graham & Nikolaj Jang Lee Linding Pedersen (eds.), Epistemic Entitlement. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 37-142.
How to Be a Bayesian Dogmatist.Brian T. Miller - 2016 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 94 (4):766-780.
Unconscious perceptual justification.Jacob Berger, Bence Nanay & Jake Quilty-Dunn - 2018 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 61 (5-6):569-589.

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References found in this work

Inference to the Best Explanation.Peter Lipton - 1991 - London and New York: Routledge/Taylor and Francis Group.
Inference to the Best Explanation.Peter Lipton - 1991 - London and New York: Routledge.
Skepticism and the Veil of Perception.Michael Huemer (ed.) - 2001 - Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield.
The skeptic and the dogmatist.James Pryor - 2000 - Noûs 34 (4):517–549.

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