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  1. Cartesian Scepticism and Relevant Alternatives.P. Schreck - unknown - Eidos: The Canadian Graduate Journal of Philosophy 8.
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  2. Relevant Alternatives and Missed Clues: Redux.Peter Hawke - forthcoming - Journal of Philosophy.
    I construe Relevant Alternatives Theory (RAT) as an abstract combination of anti-skepticism and epistemic modesty, then re-evaluate the challenge posed to it by the missed clue counter-examples of Schaffer [2001]. The import of this challenge has been underestimated, as Schaffer’s specific argument invites distracting objections. I offer a novel formalization of RAT, accommodating a suitably wide class of concrete theories of knowledge. Then, I introduce abstract missed clue cases and prove that every RA theory, as formalized, admits such a case. (...)
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  3. Are There Heavyweight Perceptual Reasons?Chris Ranalli - forthcoming - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism:1-26.
    Genia Schönbaumsfeld has recently argued for the view that our ordinary perceptual reasons provide support for heavyweight metaphysical and epistemological views, such as that there is a mind-independent physical world. Call this the Heavyweight Reasons Thesis. In this paper, I argue that we should reject the Heavyweight Reasons Thesis. I also argue that the rejection of the Heavyweight Reasons Thesis is compatible with the Factive Perceptual Reasons Thesis, the thesis that our perceptual reasons for our ordinary beliefs can be factive, (...)
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  4. Précis on Knowing and Checking: an Epistemological Investigation.Guido Melchior - 2023 - Acta Analytica 38 (1):1-13.
    In this Précis, I provide an overview of my Monograph Knowing and Checking: An Epistemological Investigation (Melchior 2019), which is subject to a book symposium organized by the University of Maribor. This volume in Acta Analytica contains contributions by Peter Baumann, Kelly Becker, Marian David, Nenad Miščević, Robert Weston Siscoe, and Danilo Šuster along with my replies.
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  5. Replies to the Critics of Knowing and Checking: an Epistemological Investigation.Guido Melchior - 2023 - Acta Analytica 38 (1):95-131.
    This paper replies to the comments made in Acta Analytica by Peter Baumann, Kelly Becker, Marian David, Nenad Miščević, Wes Siscoe, and Danilo Šuster on my Knowing and Checking: An Epistemological Investigation (Routledge 2019), hereinafter abbreviated as KC. These papers resulted from a workshop organized by the department of philosophy of the University of Maribor. I am very thankful to the organizers of the workshop and to the authors for their comments.
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  6. The safe, the sensitive, and the severely tested: a unified account.Georgi Gardiner & Brian Zaharatos - 2022 - Synthese 200 (5):1-33.
    This essay presents a unified account of safety, sensitivity, and severe testing. S’s belief is safe iff, roughly, S could not easily have falsely believed p, and S’s belief is sensitive iff were p false S would not believe p. These two conditions are typically viewed as rivals but, we argue, they instead play symbiotic roles. Safety and sensitivity are both valuable epistemic conditions, and the relevant alternatives framework provides the scaffolding for their mutually supportive roles. The relevant alternatives condition (...)
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  7. Banal Skepticism and the Errors of Doubt: On Ephecticism about Rape Accusations.Georgi Gardiner - 2021 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 45:393-421.
    Ephecticism is the tendency towards suspension of belief. Epistemology often focuses on the error of believing when one ought to doubt. The converse error—doubting when one ought to believe—is relatively underexplored. This essay examines the errors of undue doubt. I draw on the relevant alternatives framework to diagnose and remedy undue doubts about rape accusations. Doubters tend to invoke standards for belief that are too demanding, for example, and underestimate how farfetched uneliminated error possibilities are. They mistake seeing how incriminating (...)
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  8. What Shifts Epistemic Standards? DeRose on Contextualism, Safety, and Sensitivity.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2020 - International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 10 (1):21-27.
    In The Appearance of Ignorance, Keith DeRose develops a version of epistemic contextualism that combines aspects of both safety and sensitivity theories of knowledge. This paper discusses some potential problems for DeRose’s account stemming from his Rule of Sensitivity, which is meant to model upwards shifts in epistemic standards.
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  9. Descartes Foundationalism: An Answer to the Skeptics’ or A Way Out?Ncha Gabriel Bubu - 2019 - Social Sciences Studies Journal 5 (44):5232-5237.
    The phenomenon of knowledge is a fundamental issue in epistemology as a main branch of philosophy concerned with knowledge related problems. Over time, epistemologists attempted to give us or provide clues as to what reality actually is, that is the question of the certainty of knowledge has always been topical in any epistemic enterprise. The search for knowledge becomes more cumbersome when one considers the challenge of the skeptics and sophists about the ability of man knowing anything for certain. To (...)
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  10. The Growing Block Theory and the Epistemic Objection.Peihong Xie - 2019 - Dissertation, Wuhan University
    As a main challenge to the growing block theory (GBT), the epistemic objection is intended to show that GBT is untenable because it leads to the ignorance of the objective present. What is worse, extant solutions to this objection, the dead past view (DPV) and strong tense views (STV), are unsatisfactory on the ground that their semantic explanations of tensed statements undermine the purported semantic unity of GBT and thus make GBT collapse into a version of presentism. In contrast to (...)
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  11. Questions, topics and restricted closure.Peter Hawke - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (10):2759-2784.
    Single-premise epistemic closure is the principle that: if one is in an evidential position to know that P where P entails Q, then one is in an evidential position to know that Q. In this paper, I defend the viability of opposition to closure. A key task for such an opponent is to precisely formulate a restricted closure principle that remains true to the motivations for abandoning unrestricted closure but does not endorse particularly egregious instances of closure violation. I focus (...)
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  12. A Logical Transmission Principle for Conclusive Reasons.Charles B. Cross - 2015 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 93 (2):353-370.
    Dretske's conclusive reasons account of knowledge is designed to explain how epistemic closure can fail when the evidence for a belief does not transmit to some of that belief's logical consequences. Critics of Dretske dispute the argument against closure while joining Dretske in writing off transmission. This paper shows that, in the most widely accepted system for counterfactual logic , conclusive reasons are governed by an informative, non-trivial, logical transmission principle. If r is a conclusive reason for believing p in (...)
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  13. Epistemic Closure and Epistemic Logic I: Relevant Alternatives and Subjunctivism.Wesley H. Holliday - 2015 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 44 (1):1-62.
    Epistemic closure has been a central issue in epistemology over the last forty years. According to versions of the relevant alternatives and subjunctivist theories of knowledge, epistemic closure can fail: an agent who knows some propositions can fail to know a logical consequence of those propositions, even if the agent explicitly believes the consequence (having “competently deduced” it from the known propositions). In this sense, the claim that epistemic closure can fail must be distinguished from the fact that agents do (...)
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  14. Skeptical Appeal: The Source-Content Bias.John Turri - 2015 - Cognitive Science 39 (2):307-324.
    Radical skepticism is the view that we know nothing, or at least next to nothing. Nearly no one actually believes that skepticism is true. Yet it has remained a serious topic of discussion for millennia and it looms large in popular culture. What explains its persistent and widespread appeal? How does the skeptic get us to doubt what we ordinarily take ourselves to know? I present evidence from two experiments that classic skeptical arguments gain potency from an interaction between two (...)
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  15. A Relevant Alternatives Solution to the Bootstrapping and Self-Knowledge Problems.Darren Bradley - 2014 - Journal of Philosophy 111 (7):379-393.
    The main argument given for relevant alternatives theories of knowledge has been that they answer scepticism about the external world. I will argue that relevant alternatives also solve two other problems that have been much discussed in recent years, a) the bootstrapping problem and b) the apparent conflict between semantic externalism and armchair self-knowledge. Furthermore, I will argue that scepticism and Mooreanism can be embedded within the relevant alternatives framework.
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  16. A Critical Introduction to Skepticism.Allan Hazlett - 2014 - New York: Bloomsbury Academic.
    Skepticism remains a central and defining issue in epistemology, and in the wider tradition of Western philosophy. To better understand the contemporary position of this important philosophical subject, Allan Hazlett introduces a range of topics, including: -/- • Ancient skepticism • skeptical arguments in the work of Hume and Descartes • Cartesian skepticism in contemporary epistemology • anti-skeptical strategies, including Mooreanism, nonclosure, and contextualism • additional varieties of skepticism • the practical consequences of Cartesian skepticism -/- Presenting a comprehensive survey (...)
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  17. Explicating a Standard Externalist Argument against the KK Principle.Simon D'Alfonso - 2013 - Logos and Episteme (4):399-406.
    The KK principle is typically rejected in externalist accounts of knowledge. However, a standard general argument for this rejection is in need of a supportive explication. In a recent paper, Samir Okasha argues that the standard externalist argument in question is fallacious. In this paper I start off with some critical discussion of Okasha’s analysis before suggesting an alternative way in which an externalist might successfully present such a case. I then further explore this issue via a look at how (...)
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  18. Incarnating Kripke’s Skepticism About Meaning.Eisuke Sakakibara - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (2):277-291.
    Although Kripke’s skepticism leads to the conclusion that meaning does not exist, his argument relies upon the supposition that more than one interpretation of words is consistent with linguistic evidence. Relying solely on metaphors, he assumes that there is a multiplicity of possible interpretations without providing any strict proof. In his book The Taming of the True, Neil Tennant pointed out that there are serious obstacles to this thesis and concluded that the skeptic’s nonstandard interpretations are “will o’ wisps.” In (...)
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  19. Presuppositional Epistemic Contextualism and the Problem of Known Presuppositions.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2012 - In Jessica Brown & Mikkel Gerken (eds.), Knowledge Ascriptions. Oxford University Press. pp. 104-119.
    In this chapter, I produce counterexamples to Presuppositional Epistemic Contextualism (PEC), a view about the semantics of ‘knowledge’-ascriptions that I have argued for elsewhere. According to PEC, the semantic content of the predicate ‘know’ at a context C is partly determined by the speakers’ pragmatic presuppositions at C. The problem for the view that I shall be concerned with here arises from the fact that pragmatic presuppositions are sometimes known to be true by the speakers who make them: hence the (...)
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  20. Epistemic Logic, Relevant Alternatives, and the Dynamics of Context.Wesley H. Holliday - 2012 - Lecture Notes in Computer Science 7415:109-129.
    According to the Relevant Alternatives (RA) Theory of knowledge, knowing that something is the case involves ruling out (only) the relevant alternatives. The conception of knowledge in epistemic logic also involves the elimination of possibilities, but without an explicit distinction, among the possibilities consistent with an agent’s information, between those relevant possibilities that an agent must rule out in order to know and those remote, far-fetched or otherwise irrelevant possibilities. In this article, I propose formalizations of two versions of the (...)
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  21. The Skeptical Challenges of Hume and Berkeley: Can They Be Answered?Michael Tooley - 2011 - Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 85 (2):27-46.
    My topic is the skeptical challenges that are posed by Hume and Berkeley. Can one show, contrary to what Hume claimed, that one is justified in projecting regularities that have held in the past into the future? Can one show that induction is justified? Or can one show, contrary to what Berkeley claimed, not only that the hypothesis that there is an external, physical world expresses a coherent proposition, but also one that is extremely likely to be true? -/- The (...)
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  22. Contrastivism and lucky questions.Kelly Becker - 2009 - Philosophia 37 (2):245-260.
    There’s something deeply right in the idea that knowledge requires an ability to discriminate truth from falsity. Failing to incorporate some version of the discrimination requirement into one’s epistemology generates cases of putative knowledge that are at best problematic. On the other hand, many theories that include a discrimination requirement thereby appear to entail violations of closure. This prima facie tension is resolved nicely in Jonathan Schaffer’s contrastivism, which I describe herein. The contrastivist take on relevant alternatives is implausible, however, (...)
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  23. Virtue-Theoretic Responses to Skepticism.Guy Axtell - 2008 - In John Greco (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Skepticism. Oxford University Press.
    This chapter focuses on the responses that proponents of virtue epistemology (VE) make to radical skepticism and particularly to two related forms of it, Pyrrhonian skepticism and the “underdetermination-based” argument, both of which have been receiving widening attention in recent debate. Section 1 of the chapter briefly articulates these two skeptical arguments and their interrelationship, while section 2 explains the close connection between a virtue-theoretic and a neo-Moorean response to them. In sections 3 and 4 I advance arguments for improving (...)
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  24. ``Closure and Alternative Possibilities".Jonathan L. Kvanvig - 2008 - In John Greco (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Skepticism. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 456-484.
  25. The virtues of epistemic conservatism.Kevin McCain - 2008 - Synthese 164 (2):185–200.
    Although several important methodologies implicitly assume the truth of epistemic conservatism, the view that holding a belief confers some measure of justification on the belief, recent criticisms have led some to conclude that epistemic conservatism is an implausible view. That conclusion is mistaken. In this article, I propose a new formulation of epistemic conservatism that is not susceptible to the criticisms leveled at earlier formulations of epistemic conservatism. In addition to withstanding these criticisms, this formulation of epistemic conservatism has several (...)
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  26. Sensitivity, safety, and anti-luck epistemology.Duncan Pritchard - 2008 - In John Greco (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Skepticism. Oxford University Press.
    This paper surveys attempts in the recent literature to offer a modal condition on knowledge as a way of resolving the problem of scepticism. In particular, safety-based and sensitivity-based theories of knowledge are considered in detail, along with the anti-sceptical prospects of an explicitly anti-luck epistemology.
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  27. Contrastivism, evidence, and scepticism.Duncan Pritchard - 2008 - Social Epistemology 22 (3):305 – 323.
    I offer a critical treatment of the contrastivist response to the problem of radical scepticism. In particular, I argue that if contrastivism is understood along externalist lines then it is unnecessary, while if it is understood along internalist lines then it is intellectually dissatisfying. Moreover, I claim that a closer examination of the conditions under which it is appropriate to claim knowledge reveals that we can accommodate many of the intuitions appealed to by contrastivists without having to opt for this (...)
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  28. Contextualism, Contrastivism, Relevant Alternatives, and Closure.Jonathan L. Kvanvig - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 134 (2):131-140.
    Contextualists claim two important virtues for their view. First, contextualism is a non-skeptical epistemology, given the plausible idea that not all contexts invoke the high standards for knowledge needed to generate the skeptical conclusion that we know little or nothing. Second, contextualism is able to preserve closure concerning knowledge – the idea that knowledge is extendable on the basis of competent deduction from known premises. As long as one keeps the context fixed, it is plausible to think that some closure (...)
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  29. A closer look at closure scepticism.Michael Blome-Tillmann - 2006 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society (Paperback) 106 (3):381-390.
    The most prominent arguments for scepticism in modern epistemology employ closure principles of some kind. To begin my discussion of such arguments, consider Simple Knowledge Closure (SKC): (SKC) (Kxt[p] ∧ (p → q)) → Kxt[q].1 Assuming its truth for the time being, the sceptic can use (SKC) to reason from the two assumptions that, firstly, we don’t know ¬sh and that, secondly, op entails ¬sh to the conclusion that we don’t know op, where ‘op’ and ‘sh’ are shorthand for ‘ordinary (...)
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  30. Antiskeptical conditionals.Theodore J. Everett - 2006 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (3):505–536.
    Empirical knowledge exists in the form of antiskeptical conditionals, which are propositions like [if I am not undetectably deceived, then I am holding a pen]. Such conditionals, despite their trivial appearance, have the same essential content as the categorical propositions that we usually discuss, and can serve the same functions in science and practical reasoning. This paper sketches out two versions of a general response to skepticism that employs these conditionals. The first says that our ordinary knowledge attributions can safely (...)
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  31. Motivating the relevant alternatives approach.Patrick Rysiew - 2006 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 36 (2):259-279.
    But it’s not the mere fact that the RA theorist needs an account of ‘ruling out’ and ‘relevance’ that has tended to lead people to regard the RA approach with suspicion. In itself, this simply means that the RA theorist has some further work to do; and what theorist doesn’t? No; the principal source of scepticism regarding the ability of the RA theorist to come up with a complete and satisfactory account of knowing stems, rather, from an unhappiness with the (...)
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  32. Epistemic Luck, by Duncan Pritchard. [REVIEW]Basil Smith - 2006 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 14 (2):291-295.
  33. A noncontextualist account of contextualist linguistic data.Mylan Engel - 2005 - Acta Analytica 20 (2):56-79.
    The paper takes as its starting point the observation that people can be led to retract knowledge claims when presented with previously ignored error possibilities, but offers a noncontextualist explanation of the data. Fallibilist epistemologies are committed to the existence of two kinds of Kp -falsifying contingencies: (i) Non-Ignorable contingencies [NI-contingencies] and (ii) Properly-Ignorable contingencies [PI-contingencies]. For S to know that p, S must be in an epistemic position to rule out all NI-contingencies, but she need not be able to (...)
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  34. Scepticism, epistemic luck, and epistemic angst.Duncan Pritchard - 2005 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (2):185 – 205.
    A commonly expressed worry in the contemporary literature on the problem of epistemological scepticism is that there is something deeply intellectually unsatisfying about the dominant anti-sceptical theories. In this paper I outline the main approaches to scepticism and argue that they each fail to capture what is essential to the sceptical challenge because they fail to fully understand the role that the problem of epistemic luck plays in that challenge. I further argue that scepticism is best thought of not as (...)
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  35. Contextualist approaches to epistemology: Problems and prospects.Elke Brendel & Christoph Jäger - 2004 - Erkenntnis 61 (2-3):143 - 172.
    In this paper we survey some main arguments for and against epistemological contextualism. We distinguish and discuss various kinds of contextualism, such as attributer contextualism (the most influential version of which is semantic, conversational, or radical contextualism); indexicalism; proto-contextualism; Wittgensteinian contextualism; subject, inferential, or issue contextualism; epistemic contextualism; and virtue contextualism. Starting with a sketch of Dretske's Relevant Alternatives Theory and Nozick's Tracking Account of Knowledge, we reconstruct the history of various forms of contextualism and the ways contextualists try to (...)
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  36. What's Wrong with Contextualism, and a Noncontextualist Resolution of the Skeptical Paradox.Mylan Engel Jr - 2004 - Erkenntnis 61 (2-3):203 - 231.
    Skeptics try to persuade us of our ignorance with arguments like the following: 1. I don't know that I am not a handless brain-in-a-vat [BIV]. 2. If I don't know that I am not a handless BIV, then I don't know that I have hands. Therefore, 3. I don't know that I have hands. The BIV argument is valid, its premises are intuitively compelling, and yet, its conclusion strikes us as a absurd. Something has to go, but what? Contextualists contend (...)
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  37. Deliberative Alternatives.Dana K. Nelkin - 2004 - Philosophical Topics 32 (1/2):215-240.
    There are powerful skeptical challenges to the idea that we are free. And yet, it seems simply impossible for us to shake the sense that we really are free. Some are convinced that the skeptical challenges are insurmountable and resign themselves to living under an illusion, while others argue that the challenges can be met. Even among those who believe that our sense of ourselves as free is at least roughly accurate, there are deep differences of opinion concerning what freedom (...)
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  38. Defeating Skepticism.Robert F. Almeder - 2003 - Philosophical Inquiry 25 (1-2):245-254.
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  39. The relevant alternatives theory and missed clues.T. Black - 2003 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 81 (1):96 – 106.
    According to the relevant alternatives theory of knowledge (RA), I know that p only if my evidence eliminates all relevant alternatives to p . Jonathan Schaffer has recently argued that David Lewis's version of RA, which is perhaps the most detailed version yet provided, cannot account for our failure to know in cases involving missed clues, that is, cases in which we see but fail to appreciate decisive evidence. I argue, however, that Lewis's version of RA survives exposure to missed (...)
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  40. What missed clues cases show.Anthony Brueckner - 2003 - Analysis 63 (4):303–305.
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  41. Comment on John Greco's Putting Skeptics in Their Place.Reza Lahroodi & Frederick F. Schmitt - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (2):457-465.
    In this comment, we will focus on Greco’s brief for agent reliabilism in preference to simple reliabilism. Agent reliabilism differs from simple reliabilism primarily in requiring, not merely belief that results from a reliable process, but belief grounded in stable dispositions that make up the subject’s character.
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  42. Skepticism, relevant alternatives, and deductive closure.G. C. Sane - 2003 - In Steven Luper (ed.), Essential Knowledge: Readings in Epistemology. Longman. pp. 263.
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  43. RELEVANT ALTERNATIVES AND THE SHIFTING STANDARDS OF KNOWLEDGE.Tim Black - 2002 - Southwest Philosophy Review 18 (1):23-32.
    So, C. I don’t know that T. Premises 1 and 2 are both plausible. However, C seems false—I do seem to know that there is a tree before me. AI presents a puzzle because its two plausible premises yield a conclusion whose negation is plausible. And no matter whether we accept or reject AI, we find that we must give up something plausible—either premise 1, premise 2, or the negation of C. But which of these should we give up? I (...)
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  44. Meanings, Manners, and Scepticism.Sarah Black Jones - 2002 - Dissertation, Michigan State University
    In Meanings, Manners, and Scepticism, I argue that the ordinary language philosopher, the relevant alternativist, and the contextualist fail to refute the sceptic. I argue that they fail to refute the sceptic because their arguments critically rest on a number of both dogmatic and erroneous assumptions. In particular they rest on the dogmatic and erroneous assumptions that common sense is threatened by skepticism, that ordinary linguistic behaviour is of epistemic significance, and that the sceptic's departure from the linguistic norm suffices (...)
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  45. Recent Work on Radical Skepticism.Duncan Pritchard - 2002 - American Philosophical Quarterly 39 (3):215-257.
    This discussion surveys recent developments in the treatment of the epistemological problem of skepticism. These are arguments which attack our knowledge of certain truths rather than, say, our belief in the existence of certain entities. In particular, this article focuses on the radical versions of these skeptical arguments, arguments which purport to show that knowledge is, for the most part, impossible, rather than just that we lack knowledge in a particular discourse. Although most of the key recent developments in this (...)
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  46. Externalism, Skepticism, and Relevant Alternatives.Raymond Jerome Vanarragon - 2002 - Dissertation, University of Notre Dame
    Externalist theories of knowledge often claim that whether a person's true belief is knowledge depends on the reliability of the faculties that produced the belief. Some philosophers think that the force of Cartesian skeptical arguments presents a problem for these theories. Externalism seems to entail a too-easy response to skepticism: since whether we know depends mainly on the reliability of our faculties, and skeptical arguments give us no reason to think our faculties unreliable, such arguments do not threaten our knowledge. (...)
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  47. Scepticism and contrast classes.A. Bird - 2001 - Analysis 61 (2):97-107.
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  48. Scepticism and contrast classes.Alexander Bird - 2001 - Analysis 61 (2):97–107.
    1. Contextualism seeks to acknowledge the power of sceptical arguments while permitting to be true at least some of the assertions of knowledge and justification we commonly make. It seems to me now just as if I am in an office in Edinburgh. According to the sceptic the claim that I am in fact in an office in Edinburgh is unjustified, since there is no reason I can give for this belief that is not also consistent with (or undermined by) (...)
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  49. Relevant alternatives and closure.Mark Heller - 1999 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 77 (2):196 – 208.
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  50. The New Relevant Alternatives Theory.Jonathan Vogel - 1999 - Noûs 33 (s13):155-180.
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