Self-knowledge, agency, and force


Abstract
My aim in this paper is to articulate further what may be called an agency theory of self-knowledge. Many theorists have stressed how important agency is to self- knowledge, and much work has been done drawing connections between the two notions.<sup>2</sup> However, it has not always been clear what _epistemic_ advantage agency gives us in this area and why it does so. I take it as a constraint on an adequate account of how a subject knows her own mental states and acts, that it construe the known mental states and acts realistically and as independent of their self-ascription, and that it deliver genuine epistemic standing to the knower. The main task of the paper will, then, be to explore how our having rational agency with respect to our mental states may be able to secure genuine epistemic warrant for our self-ascriptions of states or acts independent of the ascriptions. This task will be carried out by focussing on the question of what account we should give of our knowledge of what I call our acts of judging. In the remainder of this section, I will do a little to clarify what is meant by that question. Section 2 will attempt to introduce us to elements of the best way to approach the question by considering some alternative strategies. Section 3 is devoted to forming some idea of what _kind_ of warrant we are looking for when considering how agency might give us self-knowledge. Section 4 aims to present a suggestion as to how agency gives us the kind of warrant identified over our acts of judging. Section 5 deals with some objections
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy of Mind
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ISBN(s) 0031-8205
DOI 10.1111/j.1933-1592.2005.tb00472.x
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References found in this work BETA

The Skeptic and the Dogmatist.James Pryor - 2000 - Noûs 34 (4):517–549.
Content Preservation.Tyler Burge - 1993 - Philosophical Review 102 (4):457.

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Citations of this work BETA

Active Belief.Matthew Boyle - 2009 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 39 (S1):119-147.
Embedded Mental Action in Self-Attribution of Belief.Antonia Peacocke - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (2):353-377.
Moran on Agency and Self-Knowledge.Lucy O'Brien - 2003 - European Journal of Philosophy 11 (3):391-401.
XIII—Self-Knowledge, Transparency, and Self-Authorship.Sacha Golob - 2015 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 115 (3_pt_3):235-253.
Self-Knowledge and Commitments.Annalisa Coliva - 2009 - Synthese 171 (3):365 - 375.

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