I provide a new account of the nature of Cartesian scepticism, in which I show that if we draw on the notion of discourse structure we can show exactly how Cartesian scepticism is induced and that it is, in principle, impossible to dispel. The account proceeds by showing that, given the nature of discourse structure, there is no absolute distinction between what we normally think of as factual discourse– as discourse about “the actual world” – and what we normally think of as fictional discourse – as discourse about “a fictional world” – and, in short, no absolute distinction between fact and fiction. The power of the account of Cartesian scepticism therefore resides in the power of the account of discourse structure, and accordingly the account of discourse structure should be of at least as much interest as the account of scepticism. S. Afr. J. Philos. Vol.22(1) 2003: 40-50
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DOI 10.4314/sajpem.v22i1.31359
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