Epistemic circularity squared? Skepticism about common sense

Abstract
Epistemic circularity occurs when a subject forms the belief that a faculty F is reliable through the use of F. Although this is often thought to be vicious, externalist theories generally don't rule it out. For some philosophers, this is a reason to reject externalism. However, Michael Bergmann defends externalism by drawing on the tradition of common sense in two ways. First, he concedes that epistemically circular beliefs cannot answer a subject's doubts about her cognitive faculties. But, he argues, subjects don't have such doubts, so epistemically circular beliefs are rarely called upon to play this role. Second, following Thomas Reid, Bergmann argues that we have noninferential, though epistemically circular, knowledge that our faculties are reliable. I argue, however, that Bergmann's view is undermined by doubts a subject should have and that there is no plausible explanation for how we can have noninferential knowledge that our faculties are reliable
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy of Mind
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ISBN(s) 0031-8205
DOI 10.1111/j.1933-1592.2006.tb00610.x
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References found in this work BETA
Warrant and Proper Function.Alvin Plantinga - 1993 - Oxford University Press.
Philosophical Explanations.Robert Nozick - 1981 - Harvard University Press.
Epistemology and Cognition.Alvin I. Goldman - 1986 - Harvard University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA
Socially Extended Knowledge.Jennifer Lackey - 2014 - Philosophical Issues 24 (1):282-298.
Knowing From Testimony.Jennifer Lackey - 2006 - Philosophy Compass 1 (5):432–448.
Epistemic Circularity and Common Sense: A Reply to Reed.Michael Bergmann - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (1):198-207.

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