Reconciling Enkrasia and Higher-Order Defeat

Erkenntnis 84 (6):1369-1386 (2019)
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Abstract

Titelbaum Oxford studies in epistemology, 2015) has recently argued that the Enkratic Principle is incompatible with the view that rational belief is sensitive to higher-order defeat. That is to say, if it cannot be rational to have akratic beliefs of the form “p, but I shouldn’t believe that p,” then rational beliefs cannot be defeated by higher-order evidence, which indicates that they are irrational. In this paper, I distinguish two ways of understanding Titelbaum’s argument, and argue that neither version is sound. The first version can be shown to rest on a subtle, but crucial, misconstrual of the Enkratic Principle. The second version can be resisted through careful consideration of cases of higher-order defeat. The upshot is that proponents of the Enkratic Principle are free to maintain that rational belief is sensitive to higher-order defeat.

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Mattias Skipper
Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences

Citations of this work

Higher-Order Defeat and the Impossibility of Self-Misleading Evidence.Mattias Skipper - forthcoming - In Mattias Skipper & Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen (eds.), Higher-Order Evidence: New Essays. Oxford University Press.
Higher-Order Defeat Without Epistemic Dilemmas.Mattias Skipper - 2018 - Logos and Episteme 9 (4):451-465.
The challenge of heritability: genetic determinants of beliefs and their implications.Wade Munroe - 2020 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 63 (8):831-874.

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