How To Be Conservative: A Partial Defense of Epistemic Conservatism

Australasian Journal of Philosophy 91 (3):501-514 (2013)

Authors
Paul Silva Jr.
University of Cologne
Abstract
Conservatism about perceptual justification tells us that we cannot have perceptual justification to believe p unless we also have justification to believe that perceptual experiences are reliable. There are many ways to maintain this thesis, ways that have not been sufficiently appreciated. Most of these ways lead to at least one of two problems. The first is an over-intellectualization problem, whereas the second problem concerns the satisfaction of the epistemic basing requirement on justified belief. I argue that there is at least one Conservative view that survives both difficulties, a view which has the further ability to undercut a crucial consideration that has supported Dogmatist views about perceptual justification. The final section explores a tension between Conservatism and the prospects of having a completely general account of propositional justification. Ironically, the problem is that Conservatives seem committed to making the acquisition of propositional justification too easy. My partial defense of Conservatism concludes by suggesting possible solutions to this problem.
Keywords conservatism  dogmatism  perceptual justification  propositional justification  doxastic justification  epistemic basing  grounds  entitlements  easy justification
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DOI 10.1080/00048402.2012.751431
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References found in this work BETA

What is Justified Belief.Alvin Goldman - 1979 - In George Pappas (ed.), Justification and Knowledge. Boston: D. Reidel. pp. 1-25.
The Skeptic and the Dogmatist.James Pryor - 2000 - Noûs 34 (4):517–549.
Warrant for Nothing (and Foundations for Free)?Crispin Wright - 2004 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 78 (1):167–212.
Compassionate Phenomenal Conservatism.Michael Huemer - 2007 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 74 (1):30–55.

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Citations of this work BETA

Propositional Justification and Doxastic Justification.Paul Silva & Luis R. G. Oliveira - forthcoming - In Maria Lasonen-Aarnio & Clayton M. Littlejohn (eds.), Routledge Handbook of the Philosophy Evidence. Routledge.
Does Doxastic Justification Have a Basing Requirement?Paul Silva - 2015 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 93 (2):371-387.
The Many Ways of the Basing Relation.Luca Moretti & Tommaso Piazza - forthcoming - In Joseph Adam Carter & Patrick Bondy (eds.), Well Founded Belief: New Essays on the Epistemic Basing Relation. London: Routledge.
Experience Does Justify Belief.Nicholas Silins - 2014 - In Ram Neta (ed.), Current Controversies In Epistemology. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 55-69.

View all 6 citations / Add more citations

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