A Note on Existentially Known Assertions

Philosophical Quarterly 65 (261):813-821 (2015)
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An assertion is existentially known if and only if: (i) the speaker knows that the sentence she uses to make the assertion expresses a true proposition; (ii) she makes the assertion based on that knowledge; and (iii) she does not believe, have justification for, or know the proposition asserted. Accordingly, if existentially known assertions could be made correctly—as argued by Charlie Pelling in his ‘Assertion and the Provision of Knowledge’—this would show that the norm of assertion cannot be the speaker's belief in, justification for or knowledge of the proposition. In this paper, I try to show that Pelling's argument is inconclusive, as it rests on two assumptions which can be resisted. In turn, I offer a pair of alternative strategies to explain how we can deal with existentially known assertions under the assumption that the speaker's knowledge is the norm of assertion.



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Assertion.Peter Pagin & Neri Marsili - 2021 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Against selfless assertions.Ivan Milić - 2017 - Philosophical Studies 174 (9):2277-2295.

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References found in this work

Knowledge and its limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Knowledge and lotteries.John Hawthorne - 2004 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Ignorance: A Case for Scepticism.Peter K. Unger - 1975 - Oxford [Eng.]: Oxford University Press.
Norms of assertion.Jennifer Lackey - 2007 - Noûs 41 (4):594–626.

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