Psychonomic Bulletin and Review 22 (2):378-390 (2015)

Authors
John Turri
University of Waterloo
Wesley Buckwalter
University of Manchester
Peter Blouw
University of Waterloo
Abstract
Nearly all success is due to some mix of ability and luck. But some successes we attribute to the agent’s ability, whereas others we attribute to luck. To better understand the criteria distinguishing credit from luck, we conducted a series of four studies on knowledge attributions. Knowledge is an achievement that involves reaching the truth. But many factors affecting the truth are beyond our control and reaching the truth is often partly due to luck. Which sorts of luck are compatible with knowledge? We find that knowledge attributions are highly sensitive to lucky events that change the explanation for why a belief is true. By contrast, knowledge attributions are surprisingly insensitive to lucky events that threaten but ultimately fail to change the explanation for why a belief is true. These results shed light on our concept of knowledge, help explain apparent inconsistencies in prior work on knowledge attributions, and constitute progress toward a general understanding of the relation between success and luck.
Keywords knowledge attribution  luck  social cognition
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References found in this work BETA

Discrimination and Perceptual Knowledge.Alvin I. Goldman - 1976 - Journal of Philosophy 73 (November):771-791.

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Citations of this work BETA

Virtue Epistemology.John Turri, Mark Alfano & John Greco - 2011 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:1-51.
The Value of Knowledge.J. Adam Carter, Duncan Pritchard & John Turri - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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