Abnormality, cognitive virtues, and knowledge

Synthese 163 (1):99-118 (2008)
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Abstract

Causal analyses of one’s knowing that p have recently emphasized the involvement of cognitive virtues in coming to believe that p. John Greco suggests that in order to deal with Gettier-type cases, a virtue analysis of knowing should include a requirement that one’s knowing does not in a certain way involve abnormality. Yet Greco’s emphasis on statistical abnormality either renders his analysis subject to a generality problem or to objections regarding certain Gettier-type cases. When we instead consider abnormality in the sense of a causally differentiating factor in relation to a causal contrast situation, the account remains unclear concerning its application to an interesting non-Gettier-type case concerning chance. The exploration of these shortcomings casts doubt on the epistemological usefulness of the schema, ‘If you know, then there is no abnormality in your being right. ’

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Robert Shope
University of Massachusetts, Boston

Citations of this work

Knowledge and success from ability.John Greco - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 142 (1):17 - 26.

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References found in this work

Theory of knowledge.Roderick M. Chisholm - 1966 - Englewood Cliffs, N.J.,: Prentice-Hall.
Knowledge as Credit for True Belief.John Greco - 2003 - In Michael DePaul & Linda Zagzebski (eds.), Intellectual Virtue: Perspectives From Ethics and Epistemology. Clarendon Press. pp. 111-134.
Assertion, knowledge, and context.Keith DeRose - 2002 - Philosophical Review 111 (2):167-203.
Knowledge.Keith Lehrer - 1974 - Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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