The Perils of Skepticism

Augustine was aware of objections to the idea of educational progress, and nowhere is this more acute than in his treatment of academic skepticism. While much attention has been paid to Augustine’s theory of knowledge within the Contra Academicos, too often overlooked is the specifically moral significance that he attaches to the skeptic’s critique of knowledge. I argue that Augustine’s chief criticism in this dialogue is not directed against an erroneous epistemology, although he does provide a refutation of that. Rather, itis against the disastrous educational and moral implications that follow from the skeptic’s views. Along the way I show how this interpretation helps to explain some of the novel structural features of the dialogue and allows us more securely to situate its argument against Augustine’s other key early reflections on the limits of knowledge
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  History of Philosophy
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 0019-0365
DOI 10.5840/ipq200949346
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 31,786
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Augustine, Epicurus, and External World Skepticism.Charles Bolyard - 2006 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 44 (2):157-168.
Can Contextualists Maintain Neutrality?Martin Montminy - 2008 - Philosophers' Imprint 8:1-13.
Knowledge and Deductive Closure.James L. White - 1991 - Synthese 86 (3):409 - 423.
Augustinian Skepticism in Augustine's Confessions.George Heffernan - 2008 - Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 14:73-86.
Skepticism as a Theory of Knowledge.Jim Stone - 2000 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 60 (3):527-545.
Contemporary Skepticism.Duncan Pritchard - 2004 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Hume's Skepticism.Dennis Farrell Thompson - 1998 - Dissertation, University of Massachusetts - Amherst
Skepticism, Contextualism, and Discrimination.Jonathan Schaffer - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 69 (1):138 - 155.
Added to PP index

Total downloads
22 ( #259,087 of 2,231,534 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #190,228 of 2,231,534 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature