Beliefs, Epistemic Regress and Doxastic Justification

Foundations of Science:1-39 (forthcoming)
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Abstract

By justification we understand what makes a belief epistemologically viable: generally this is considered knowledge that is true. The problem is defining this with a higher degree of precision because this is where different conflicting conceptions appear. On the one hand, we can understand justification as what makes it reasonable to acquire or maintain a belief; on the other, it is what increases the probability that the belief is true. This work tries to prove that beliefs depend on other beliefs that are epistemically justified and that such beliefs are the result of (i.e., they arise from) our privileged intuition of reality. For this, we examine the concept of epistemic regress. Epistemic reasons authorize a proposition P to be the conclusion of an argument in which such reasons function as premises and are vulnerable to epistemic regress. The three most important approaches to epistemic regress are Infinitism, Coherentism and Foundationalism.

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