Authors
Alex Worsnip
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Abstract
In discussions of whether and how pragmatic considerations can make a difference to what one ought to believe, two sets of cases feature. The first set, which dominates the debate about pragmatic reasons for belief, is exemplified by cases of being financially bribed to believe (or withhold from believing) something. The second set, which dominates the debate about pragmatic encroachment on epistemic justification, is exemplified by cases where acting on a belief rashly risks some disastrous outcome if the belief turns out to be false. Call those who think that pragmatic considerations make a difference to what one ought to believe in the second kind of case, but not in the first, ‘moderate pragmatists’. Many philosophers – in particular, most advocates of pragmatic and moral encroachment – are moderate pragmatists. But moderate pragmatists owe us an explanation of exactly why the second kind of pragmatic consideration makes a difference, but the first kind doesn’t. I argue that the most promising of these explanations all fail: they are either theoretically undermotivated, or get key cases wrong, or both. Moderate pragmatism may be an unstable stopping point between a more extreme pragmatism, on one hand, and an uncompromising anti-pragmatism on the other.
Keywords Pragmatism  Reasons for belief  Pragmatic encroachment  Moral encroachment  Epistemic normativity  Evidentialism
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Reprint years 2020, 2021
DOI 10.1111/phpr.12673
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References found in this work BETA

The Wrongs of Racist Beliefs.Rima Basu - 2019 - Philosophical Studies 176 (9):2497-2515.
Knowledge and Action.John Hawthorne & Jason Stanley - 2008 - Journal of Philosophy 105 (10):571-590.
Doxastic Wronging.Rima Basu & Mark Schroeder - 2019 - In Brian Kim & Matthew McGrath (eds.), Pragmatic Encroachment in Epistemology. Routledge. pp. 181-205.
Belief, Credence, and Pragmatic Encroachment1.Jacob Ross & Mark Schroeder - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 88 (2):259-288.
No Exception for Belief.Susanna Rinard - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (1):121-143.

View all 38 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Varieties of Moral Encroachment.Renée Jorgensen Bolinger - 2020 - Philosophical Perspectives 34 (1):5-26.
The Inelimninability of Epistemic Rationality.David Christensen - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
Regrettable Beliefs.Mica Rapstine - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (7):2169-2190.

View all 9 citations / Add more citations

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