Bayesianism without the Black box

Philosophy of Science 56 (1):48-69 (1989)
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Crucial to bayesian contributions to the philosophy of science has been a characteristic psychology, according to which investigators harbor degree of confidence assignments that (insofar as the agents are rational) obey the axioms of the probability calculus. The rub is that, if the evidence of introspection is to be trusted, this fruitful psychology is false: actual investigators harbor no such assignments. The orthodox bayesian response has been to argue that the evidence of introspection is not to be trusted here; it is to investigators' dispositions--not to their felt convictions--that the psychology is meant to be (and succeeds in being) faithful. I argue that this response, in both its orthodox and convex-set bayesian forms, should be rejected--as should the regulative ideals that make the response seem so attractive. I offer a different variant of bayesianism, designed to give the evidence of introspection its due and thus realize (as I claim the other forms of bayesianism cannot) the prescriptive mission of the bayesian project



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Mark Kaplan
Indiana University, Bloomington

Citations of this work

Eliminative induction and bayesian confirmation theory.Susan Vineberg - 1996 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 26 (2):257-66.
Confessions of a Modest Bayesian.Mark Kaplan - 1993 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy (sup1):315-337.
Eliminative Induction and Bayesian Confirmation Theory.Susan Vineberg - 1996 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 26 (2):257-266.

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References found in this work

The Foundations of Statistics.Leonard J. Savage - 1954 - Synthese 11 (1):86-89.
Decision theory as philosophy.Mark Kaplan - 1983 - Philosophy of Science 50 (4):549-577.
On indeterminate probabilities.Isaac Levi - 1974 - Journal of Philosophy 71 (13):391-418.
On Indeterminate Probabilities.Isaac Levi - 1978 - Journal of Philosophy 71 (13):233--261.
Theory of Probability.Harold Jeffreys - 1940 - Philosophy of Science 7 (2):263-264.

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