Testimony and grammatical evidentials

In Miranda Fricker, Peter Graham, David Henderson, Nikolaj Jang Lee Linding Pedersen & Jeremy Wyatt (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Social Epistemology. Routledge (forthcoming)
Authors
Peter Van Elswyk
University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
Abstract
Unlike other sources of evidence like perception and memory, testimony is intimately related to natural language. That intimacy cannot be overlooked. In this chapter, I show how cross-linguistic considerations are relevant to the epistemology of testimony. I make my case with declaratives containing grammaticalized evidentials. My discussion has a negative and a positive part. For the negative part, it is argued that some definitions of testimony are mistaken because they do not apply to testimony offered by a declarative containing an evidential. The positive component discusses a new puzzle noted by McCready (2015) that evidentials raise about the justificatory status of testimony-based beliefs.
Keywords evidentiality  testimony  social epistemology
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