Erkenntnis 83 (5):1033-1043 (2018)

Mark Povich
University of Rochester
Bird’s Essays in Collective Epistemology, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2014) account of social knowledge denies that scientific social knowledge supervenes solely on the mental states of individuals. Lackey objects that SK cannot accommodate a knowledge-action principle and the role of group defeaters. I argue that Lackey’s knowledge-action principle is ambiguous. On one disambiguation, it is false; on the other, it is true but poses no threat to SK. Regarding group defeaters, I argue that there are at least two options available to the defender of SK, both taken from literature on individual defeaters and applied to group defeaters. Finally, I argue that Lackey’s description of the case of Dr. N.—as a case in which the scientific community does not know but is merely in a position to know—is mistaken. It assumes that Dr. N.’s publication is not scientific knowledge. An analogy to the individual case shows that it is plausible that the scientific community is not merely in a position to know, although its members are. This leaves intact a conception of social knowledge on which it does not supervene on the mental states of individuals.
Keywords epistemology  knowledge  collective epistemology  group epistemology  group knowledge  scientific knowledge  social epistemology  social knowledge
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s10670-017-9926-y
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Knowledge and its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Oxford University Press.
What is Justified Belief?Alvin Goldman - 1979 - In George Pappas (ed.), Justification and Knowledge. Boston: D. Reidel. pp. 1-25.
Thought.Gilbert H. Harman - 1973 - Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press.
Knowledge and Its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Philosophy 76 (297):460-464.

View all 24 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Information and Explanation: An Inconsistent Triad and Solution.Mark Povich - 2021 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 11 (2):1-17.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Group Knowledge and Epistemic Defeat.J. Adam Carter - 2015 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 2.
Group Knowledge Analyzed.Raimo Tuomela - 2004 - Episteme 1 (2):109-127.
In What Sense Is Scientific Knowledge Collective Knowledge?Hyundeuk Cheon - 2014 - Philosophy of the Social Sciences 44 (4):407-423.
The critique of group belief.Ilya Kasavin - 2016 - Epistemology and Philosophy of Science 50 (4):63-73.
Analyzing Social Knowledge.Angelo J. Corlett - 1996 - Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
Analyzing Social Knowledge.J. Angelo Corlett - 2007 - Social Epistemology 21 (3):231 – 247.
Which Groups Have Scientific Knowledge? Wray Vs. Rolin.Chris Dragos - 2016 - Social Epistemology 30 (5-6):611-623.


Added to PP index

Total views
313 ( #29,936 of 2,454,486 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
54 ( #14,318 of 2,454,486 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes