Knowledge and certainty

Philosophical Issues 18 (1):35-57 (2008)
Abstract
This paper is a companion piece to my earlier paper “Fallibilism and Concessive Knowledge Attributions”. There are two intuitive charges against fallibilism. One is that it countenances the truth (and presumably acceptability) of utterances of sentences such as “I know that Bush is a Republican, though it might be that he is not a Republican”. The second is that it countenances the truth (and presumably acceptability) of utterances of sentences such as “I know that Bush is a Republican, even though I’m not certain that he is”, or “I know that Bush it a Republican, even though it isn’t certain that he is.” In “Fallibilism and Concessive Knowledge Attributions”, I argue that fallibilism in epistemology does not countenance the truth of utterances of sentences such as “I know that Bush is a Republican, though it might be that he is not a Republican”. In this paper, I argue that there are independent reasons for thinking that utterances of sentences such as “I know that Bush is a Republican, though I’m not certain that he is” and “I know that Bush is a Republican, though it’s not certain that he is” are unassertible. More specifically, I argue that these are simply instances of Moore’s Paradox, such as “Dogs bark, but I don’t know that they do.” The right account of Moore’s Paradox does not involve the falsehood of the semantic content of the relevant utterances, but rather their pragmatic unacceptability. So the anti-fallibilist intuitions turn out to have pragmatic, rather than semantic import, and therefore do not tell against the truth of fallibilism. Fallibilism in epistemology is often thought to be theoretically desirable, but intuitively problematic. My purpose with these two papers is to show that fallibilism is not intuitively problematic
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1533-6077.2008.00136.x
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
References found in this work BETA
Knowledge and Action.John Hawthorne & Jason Stanley - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (10):571-590.
Elusive Knowledge.David Lewis - 1996 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 74 (4):549 – 567.
Assertion, Knowledge, and Context.Keith DeRose - 2002 - Philosophical Review 111 (2):167-203.
Norms of Assertion.Jennifer Lackey - 2007 - Noûs 41 (4):594–626.
Ignorance: A Case for Scepticism.Peter K. Unger - 1975 - Oxford University Press.

View all 12 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Knowledge and Suberogatory Assertion.John Turri - 2013 - Philosophical Studies (3):1-11.
Hope, Knowledge, and Blindspots.Jordan Dodd - 2017 - Synthese 194 (2):531-543.
Assertion, Knowledge, and Action.Ishani Maitra & Brian Weatherson - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 149 (1):99-118.
Belief is Weak.John Hawthorne, Daniel Rothschild & Levi Spectre - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (5):1393-1404.

View all 20 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Fallibilism.Stephen Hetherington - 2005 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Fallibilism, Underdetermination, and Skepticism.Anthony Brueckner - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (2):384–391.
How to Think About Fallibilism.Baron Reed - 2002 - Philosophical Studies 107 (2):143-157.
Against Fallibilism.Dylan Dodd - 2011 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (4):665 - 685.
Peirce, Fallibilism, and the Science of Mathematics.Elizabeth F. Cooke - 2003 - Philosophia Mathematica 11 (2):158-175.
Concessive Knowledge Attributions and Fallibilism.Clayton Littlejohn - 2011 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 83 (3):603-619.
Fallibilism, Factivity and Epistemically Truth-Guaranteeing Justification.Boris Rähme - 2007 - In Nils Gilje & Harald Grimen (eds.), Discursive Modernity. Universitetsforlaget.
Fallibilism, Contextualism and Second-Order Skepticism.Alexander S. Harper - 2010 - Philosophical Investigations 33 (4):339-359.
Fallibilism, Epistemic Possibility, and Concessive Knowledge Attributions.Trent Dougherty & Patrick Rysiew - 2009 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 78 (1):123-132.

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

423 ( #5,107 of 2,153,474 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

49 ( #5,068 of 2,153,474 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums