Authors
Shyam Nair
Arizona State University
Abstract
Dogmatism is the view that perceptual experience provides immediate defeasible justification for certain beliefs. The bootstrapping problem for dogmatism is that it sanctions a certain defective form of reasoning that concludes in the belief that one's perceptual faculties are reliable. This paper argues that the only way for the dogmatist to avoid the bootstrapping problem is to claim that epistemic justification fails to have a structural property known as cut. This allows the dogmatist to admit that each step in the defective reasoning considered on its own is acceptable, but when stitched together, these pieces of reasoning are unacceptable (§2). The fact that this is the only plausible solution to the bootstrapping problem is, in one way, bad news. This is because it adds another member to a family of recently uncovered results that show dogmatism is incompatible with certain connections between epistemic justification and probabilities (§3). But I try to make the best of it on the dogmatist’s behalf. I show that within a certain kind of foundationalist framework, we can make good on this idea that epistemic justification fails to satisfy cut in a way needed to solve the bootstrapping problem (§4–5)
Keywords cumulative transitvity
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DOI 10.3998/ergo.12405314.0006.007
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