Many scholars agree that the Internet plays a pivotal role in self-radicalization, which can lead to behaviours ranging from lone-wolf terrorism to participation in white nationalist rallies to mundane bigotry and voting for extremist candidates. However, the mechanisms by which the Internet facilitates self-radicalization are disputed; some fault the individuals who end up self-radicalized, while others lay the blame on the technology itself. In this paper, we explore the role played by technological design decisions in online self-radicalization in its myriad (...) guises, encompassing extreme as well as more mundane forms. We begin by characterizing the phenomenon of technological seduction. Next, we distinguish between top-down seduction and bottom-up seduction. We then situate both forms of technological seduction within the theoretical model of dynamical systems theory. We conclude by articulating strategies for combatting online self-radicalization. (shrink)
Epistemological theories of knowledge and justification draw a crucial distinction between one's simply havinggood reasons for some belief, and one's actually basingone's belief on good reasons. While the most natural kind of account of basing is causal in nature--a belief is based on a reason if and only if the belief is properly caused by the reason--there is hardly any widely-accepted, counterexample-free account of the basing relation among contemporary epistemologists. Further inquiry into the nature of the basing relation is therefore (...) of paramount importance for epistemology. Without an acceptable account of the basing relation, epistemological theories remain both crucially incomplete and vulnerable to errors that can arise when authors assume an implausible view of what it takes for beliefs to be held on the basis of reasons. Well-Founded Beliefbrings together seventeen essays written by leading epistemologists to explore this important topic in greater detail. The collection is divided thematically to cover a wide range of issues related to the epistemic basic relation. The first section of essays covers the nature of the basing relation and attempts to articulate defensible accounts of what it takes to believe on the basis of a reason. Section II explores the kind of things that can be reasons on the basis of which we hold beliefs. Finally, the last section addresses the basing relation as it bears on particular problems in epistemology, such as skepticism, the analysis of knowledge, and the contingencies of our epistemic upbringing. (shrink)
Is knowledge relative? Many academics across the humanities say that it is. However those who work in mainstream epistemology generally consider that it is not. Metaepistemology and Relativism questions whether the kind of anti-relativistic background that underlies typical projects in mainstream epistemology can on closer inspection be vindicated.
Anti-luck epistemology is an approach to analyzing knowledge that takes as a starting point the widely-held assumption that knowledge must exclude luck. Call this the anti-luck platitude. As Duncan Pritchard (2005) has suggested, there are three stages constituent of anti-luck epistemology, each which specifies a different philosophical requirement: these stages call for us to first give an account of luck; second, specify the sense in which knowledge is incompatible with luck; and finally, show what conditions must be satisfied in order (...) to block the kind of luck with which knowledge was argued to be incompatible. What I’ll show here is that the modal account of luck offers a plausible story at the first stage and leads naturally to equally plausible lines to take at the second and third stages, at which a safety condition on knowledge is squarely motivated. There are, however, recent challenges—advanced by Jonathan Kvanvig (Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 77: 272–281, 2008); Kelly Becker (2007); and Jennifer Lackey (Australasian Journal of Philosophy 86(2):255–267, 2008), among others—to the plausibility of the safety-based anti-luck project I’ve sketched here at each of its three stages of development. Once I’ve made precise the challenges, I’ll show why none implies that we abandon the commitments of the safety-based anti-luck project at any of its stages. What we should conclude, then, is that a safety-condition on knowledge is motivated by independently defensible accounts of (1) what luck is; and (2) just how knowledge should be thought incompatible with it. (shrink)
Mainstream epistemology has typically taken for granted a traditional picture of the metaphysics of mind, according to which cognitive processes play out entirely within the bounds of the skull and skin. But this simple ‘intracranial’ picture is falling in- creasingly out of step with contemporary thinking in the philosophy of mind and cognitive science. Likewise, though, proponents of active exter- nalist approaches to the mind—e.g. the hypothesis of extended cognitition —have proceeded by and large without asking what epistemological ramifications should (...) arise once cognition is understood as criss-crossing the bounds of brain and world. This paper aims to motivate a puzzle that arises only once these two strands of thinking are brought in contact with one another. In particular, we want to first highlight a kind of con- dition of epistemological adequacy that should be accepted by proponents of extended cognition; once this condition is motivated, the remainder of the paper demonstrates how attempts to satisfy this condition seem to inevitably devolve into a novel kind of epistemic circularity. At the end of the day, proponents of extended cognition have a novel epistemological puzzle on their hands. (shrink)
One of the most important research programmes in contemporary cognitive science is that of extended cognition, whereby features of a subject's cognitive environment can in certain conditions become constituent parts of the cognitive process itself. The aim of this volume is to explore the epistemological ramifications of this idea.... The first part of the volume explores foundational issues with regard to an extended epistemology, including from a critical perspective. The second part of the volume examines the applications of extended epistemology (...) and the new theoretical directions that it might take us. These include its ethical ramifications, its import to the epistemology of education and emerging digital technologies, and how this idea might dovetail with certain themes in Chinese philosophy. (shrink)
This book demonstrates pride's unique profile in philosophical theory as both an emotion and an element of human virtue, and includes a range of represented perspectives: psychology; philosophy; sociology; and anthropology.
Imagine that you’ve just spent the last several months reading Don Quixote—and that you’re all but fifty pages away from finishing. Unfortunately for you, the book was due back before you could finish, and so begrudgingly, you turn it back in, having not known what happens in the end. Riddled with curiosity, you make your best guess about Quixote’s eventual fate and suppose it is the most likely scenario. Entirely unbeknownst to you, it turns out that you were right; Quixote’s (...) ultimate destiny was just what you had supposed it would be! What luck! Quite naturally, we would say that, when all is said and done, knowing what happens to Don Quixote in the end is surely better than merely believing truly what happens in the end—the predicament you find yourself in having not actually finished the book. After all, it was just by dumb luck that you guessed the ending right—a point you could deny only on the pain of some embarrassing claim of clairvoyance. We might put the idea more generally by saying that from a purely cognitive standpoint, it is better to know the truth than to stumble upon it by luck. This general idea betrays two distinct insights about knowledge. The first is the insight that while true belief is valuable, knowledge is distinctively so—knowing the truth is valuable in a way that merely having a true belief is not. The second insight here is that you lack knowledge if it’s just by dumb luck that the belief you have is true. Call these the value insight and the anti-luck insight: Value insight: Knowledge is distinctively valuable. Luck insight: Knowledge excludes luck. In contemporary epistemology, and especially over the past five years, separate projects have arisen in correspondence with these distinct intuitions: value-driven epistemology is concerned with issues surrounding the first insight, and projects under the description of anti-luck epistemology have arisen out of the second. Now we might reasonably suppose that whatever it is that makes knowledge relevantly un-lucky would be something we could cite in accounting for what makes knowledge distinctively valuable. This natural idea reflects the thought that the insights about value and luck should not be entirely disconnected. There is a problematic tension though between this reasonable expectation and the resources epistemologists have provided for us to accommodate it. What explains the tension is the fact that value-driven and anti-luck projects in epistemology have by and large been developed apart from each other, each focused on one of our two guiding insights at the expense of the other. Consequently, value-driven epistemology’s focus on the normative but not modal properties of knowledge leaves these two aspects of knowledge disconnected much in the way that anti-luck epistemology’s focus on the modal but not the normative properties of knowledge leaves these same aspects disconnected. The lacuna here between what value driven epistemologists tell us about what makes knowledge valuable and what the anti-luck epistemologists tell us about what makes knowledge exclude luck is troubling. We may resist that there should be such a disconnect if we avoid the common flaw shared by each of these projects pursued in isolation from the other. The flaw here is essentially one of naivety: that of supposing that we can give an account of knowledge exclusively in terms of conditions that would accommodate one of the two insights, while still managing to account for the other insight—which itself we did not appeal to directly in our theory of what knowledge is—e.g. in the analysis provided of it. This is the flaw behind the value-driven approaches that think about knowledge in terms of valuable properties they can’t explain to ensure modal robustness and the anti-luck projects that think of knowledge in terms of modal properties into which we can’t well smuggle the normativity needed to explain its value. To avoid this flaw, then, we should let both of these insights dictate the conditions our analysis offers as essential to knowing. The project with which I’ll be engaging here develops substantially on this widely overlooked and promising idea. (shrink)