Epistemological Disjunctivism

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2012-11-08
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Duncan Pritchard offers an original defense of epistemological disjunctivism, an account of perceptual knowledge which contends that such knowledge is paradigmatically constituted by a true belief that enjoys rational support which is both factive and reflectively accessible to the agent. In particular, in a case of paradigmatic perceptual knowledge thatp, the subject's rational support for believing thatpis that shesees that p, where this rational support is both reflectively accessible and factive (i.e., it entailsp). Such an account of perceptual knowledge poses a radical challenge to contemporary epistemology, since by the lights of standard views in epistemology this proposal is simply incoherent. Pritchard's aim inEpistemological Disjunctivismis to show that this proposal is theoretically viable (i.e., that it does not succumb to the problems that it appears to face), and also to demonstrate that this is an account of perceptual knowledge which we would want to endorse if it were available on account of its tremendous theoretical potential. In particular, he argues that epistemological disjunctivism offers a way through theimpassebetween epistemic externalism and internalism, and also provides the foundation for a distinctive response to the problem of radical skepticism.

Author Biography

Duncan Pritchard is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh. His main research area is epistemology, and he has published widely in this field, including the books Epistemic Luck (Oxford University Press, 2005) and The Nature and Value of Knowledge (with A. Haddock & A. Millar, Oxford University Press, 2010). He is editor-in-chief of the journals Oxford Bibliographies Online: Philosophy (Oxford University Press) and (with D. Machuca) International Journal for the Study of Skepticism (Brill). In 2007 he was awarded a Philip Leverhulme Prize. In 2011 he was elected to a Fellowship of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

Table of Contents

Part One: Epistemological Disjunctivism in Outline
1. Epistemological Disjunctivism: A First Pass
2. Motivating Epistemological Disjunctivism
3. Three Prima Facie Problems for Epistemological Disjunctivism
4. Metaphysical and Epistemological Disjunctivism
5. Seeing That P and Knowing That P
6. Epistemological Disjunctivism and the Epistemic Externalism/Internalism Distinction
7. Resolving the Access Problem
Notes to Part One
Part Two: Favouring versus Discriminating Epistemic Support
Introductory Remarks
1. The Relevant Alternatives Account of Perceptual Knowledge
2. Relevant Alternatives and Closure
3. Three Epistemic Principles: Discrimination, Evidential Transmission and Favouring
4. Favouring and Discriminating Epistemic Support
5. Diagnosis
6. A Two-Tiered Relevant Alternatives Theory
7. Favouring versus Discriminating Epistemic Support and Epistemological Disjunctivism
Notes to Part Two
Part Three: Radical Scepticism
Introductory Remarks
1. Radical Scepticism
2. Mooreanism
3. Contemporary Neo-Mooreanism
4. A Simpleminded Epistemological Disjunctivist Neo-Mooreanism
5. Motivating Epistemological Disjunctivist Neo-Mooreanism
6. Overriding versus Undercutting Anti-Sceptical Strategies
7. Radical Scepticism and Quietism
8. Knowing and Saying That One Knows
9. Concluding Remarks
Notes to Part Three

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