Epistemic Contextualism and Sceptical Epistemology

History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis 12 (2009)
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Abstract

Philosophers generally assume that “contextual” factors blunt the force of “external world” skepticism. I argue herein that this is not the case. On the contrary, properly invoked contextual considerations support, rather than undermine, the skeptic's agenda. This is because the contexts of assessment against which we rightfully judge that knowledge is or is not available ultimately consist in little more than our own presuppositions concerning the objectivity of the items at issue. What this implies, given the mind-independence of the external world, is the aptness of apodictic epistemic standards, and skepticism itself in the process.

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Ronald Wilburn
University of Calgary

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