Epistemology versus Non-Causal Realism

Synthese 194 (5) (2017)
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Abstract

This paper formulates a general epistemological argument against what I call non-causal realism, generalizing domain specific arguments by Benacerraf, Field, and others. First I lay out the background to the argument, making a number of distinctions that are sometimes missed in discussions of epistemological arguments against realism. Then I define the target of the argument—non-causal realism—and argue that any non-causal realist theory, no matter the subject matter, cannot be given a reasonable epistemology and so should be rejected. Finally I discuss and respond to several possible responses to the argument. In addition to clearing up and avoiding numerous misunderstandings of arguments of this kind that are quite common in the literature, this paper aims to present and endorse a rigorous and fully general epistemological argument against realism

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Jared Warren
Stanford University

Citations of this work

Debunking arguments.Daniel Z. Korman - 2019 - Philosophy Compass 14 (12):e12638.
Morality and Mathematics.Justin Clarke-Doane - 2020 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
An Explanationist Account of Genealogical Defeat.Daniel Z. Korman & Dustin Locke - 2023 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 106 (1):176-195.
Modal Idealism.David Builes - forthcoming - Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Mind.

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References found in this work

Writing the Book of the World.Theodore Sider - 2011 - Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.
On the Plurality of Worlds.David K. Lewis - 1986 - Malden, Mass.: Wiley-Blackwell.
Counterfactuals.David K. Lewis - 1973 - Malden, Mass.: Blackwell.
On What Matters: Two-Volume Set.Derek Parfit - 2011 - New York: Oxford University Press.

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