From Doubt to Despair

Nordic Wittgenstein Review (forthcoming)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

‘Gaslighting’ describes a form of manipulation that induces doubt in someone’s perceptions, experiences, understanding of events or conception of reality in general. But what kind of doubt is it? How do ‘ordinary’ epistemic doubts differ from those doubts that can lead to despair and the feeling of losing one’s mind? The phenomenon of ‘gaslighting’ has been attracting public attention for some time and has recently found its way into philosophical reflections that address moral, sexist and epistemic aspects of gaslighting. Little has been said, however, about the nature of gaslighting-induced doubts themselves, how they differ from ordinary, even ‘reasonable’ epistemic (self-) doubts and how it can come to someone doubting their own perception and conception of reality in the first place. The aim of this paper is to shed some light on these aspects by drawing on some of Wittgenstein’s remarks on doubt, published mainly in On Certainty. To this end, I will first outline the phenomenon of gaslighting as an epistemic injustice before presenting Wittgenstein’s reflections on doubt(ing). These will then be applied to the phenomenon of gaslighting, with a more specific focus on the evocation of such fundamental self-doubt in successful gaslighting, again drawing on some of Wittgenstein’s remarks.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 94,623

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Dilemmatic gaslighting.Cameron Domenico Kirk-Giannini - 2022 - Philosophical Studies 180 (3):745-772.
Epistemic dimensions of gaslighting: peer-disagreement, self-trust, and epistemic injustice.Andrew D. Spear - 2023 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 66 (1):68-91.
Anger Gaslighting and Affective Injustice.Shiloh Whitney - 2023 - Philosophical Topics 51 (1):27-62.
Am I Gaslighting Myself?Emily McGill - 2024 - Southwest Philosophy Review 40 (1):35-46.
Gaslighting by Crowd.Karen C. Adkins - 2019 - Social Philosophy Today 35:75-87.
Trust, Distrust, and ‘Medical Gaslighting’.Elizabeth Barnes - 2023 - Philosophical Quarterly 73 (3):649-676.

Analytics

Added to PP
2022-12-09

Downloads
35 (#454,139)

6 months
15 (#236,772)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

Proof of an external world.George Edward Moore - 1939 - Proceedings of the British Academy 25 (5):273--300.
Turning up the lights on gaslighting.Kate Abramson - 2014 - Philosophical Perspectives 28 (1):1-30.
Culture and Value.Ludwig Wittgenstein, G. H. Von Wright, Heikki Nymam & Peter Winch - 1982 - Philosophy and Rhetoric 15 (1):70-73.

View all 14 references / Add more references