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research articles
1. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Robb Dunphy Agrippan Problems
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In this article I consider Sextus’ account of the Five Modes and of the Two Modes in his Outlines of Pyrrhonism. I suggest that from these we can derive the basic form of a number of different problems which I refer to as “Agrippan problems,” where this category includes both the epistemic regress problem and the problem of the criterion. Finally, I suggest that there is a distinctive Agrippan problem present at the beginning of Hegel’s Science of Logic.
2. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Domingos Faria Group Testimony: Defending a Reductionist View
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Our aim in this paper is to defend the reductionist (or deflationist) view on group testimony from the attacks of divergence arguments. We will begin by presenting how divergence arguments can challenge the reductionist view. However, we will argue that these arguments are not decisive to rule out the reductionist view; for, these arguments have false premises, assuming dubious epistemic principles that testimony cannot generate knowledge and understanding. The final part of this paper will be devoted to presenting the advantages of the reductionist approach to explaining the phenomenon of group testimony.
3. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Thomas Grundmann Moral Realism and the Problem of Moral Aliens
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In this paper, I discuss a new problem for moral realism, the problem of moral aliens. In the first section, I introduce this problem. Moral aliens are people who radically disagree with us concerning moral matters. Moral aliens are neither obviously incoherent nor do they seem to lack rational support from their own perspective. On the one hand, moral realists claim that we should stick to our guns when we encounter moral aliens. On the other hand, moral realists, in contrast to anti-realists, seem to be committed to an epistemic symmetry between us and our moral aliens that forces us into rational suspension of our moral beliefs. Unless one disputes the very possibility of moral aliens, this poses a severe challenge to the moral realist. In the second section, I will address this problem. It will turn out that, on closer scrutiny, we cannot make any sense of the idea that moral aliens should be taken as our epistemic peers. Consequently, there is no way to argue that encountering moral aliens gives us any reason to revise our moral beliefs. If my argument is correct, the possibility of encountering moral aliens poses no real threat to moral realism.
4. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Perry Hendricks The Subject’s Perspective Objection to Externalism and Why it Fails
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The subject’s perspective objection (SPO) is an objection against externalist theories of justification, warrant, and knowledge. In this article, I show that externalists can accommodate the SPO while remaining externalist. So, even if the SPO is successful, it does not motivate internalism, and the primary motivation for internalism has been lost. After this, I provide an explanation for why so many people find cases that motivate the SPO convincing.
5. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Robert Michels Husserlian Eidetic Variation and Objectual Understanding as a Basis for an Epistemology of Essence
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Vaidya has recently argued that while Husserl’s method for acquiring knowledge of essence through use of our imagination is subject to a vicious epistemic circle, we can still use the method to successfully attain objectual understanding of essence. In this paper, I argue that the Husserlian objectual understanding-based epistemology envisaged by Vaidya suffers from a similar epistemic circularity as its knowledge-based foil. I argue that there is a straight-forward solution to this problem, but then raise three serious problems for an amended version of Vaidya’s proposal and any similar Husserlian epistemology of essence. The paper closes with some general reflections on applying the Husserlian method to the contemporary notion of essence and on the idea of refocusing the epistemology of essence on understanding instead of knowledge.
6. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Diana Sofronieva Empathy as a Tool for Learning about Evaluative Features of Objects
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It is generally agreed that empathy can give us knowledge about others. However, the potential use of empathy as a tool to learn about features of objects in the world more generally, as opposed to learning only about others’ internal states, has not been discussed in the literature. In this paper I make the claim that empathy can help us learn about evaluative features of objects in the world. I further defend this claim by comparing empathy to testimony. Then I present and respond to two possible objections to this analogy.
7. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Billy Wheeler Truth Tracking and Knowledge from Virtual Reality
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Is it possible to gain knowledge about the real world based solely on experiences in virtual reality? According to one influential theory of knowledge, you cannot. Robert Nozick's truth-tracking theory requires that, in addition to a belief being true, it must also be sensitive to the truth. Yet beliefs formed in virtual reality are not sensitive: in the nearest possible world where P is false, you would have continued to believe that P. This is problematic because there is increasing awareness from philosophers and technologists that virtual reality is an important way in which we can arrive at beliefs and knowledge about the world. Here I argue that a suitably modified version of Nozick's sensitivity condition is able to account for knowledge from virtual reality.
discussion notes/debate
8. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Scott Aikin Does Metaphilosophically Pragmatist Anti-Skepticism Work?
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Michael Hannon has recently given “a new apraxia” argument against skepticism. Hannon’s case is that skepticism depends on a theory of knowledge that makes the concept “useless and uninteresting.” Three arguments rebutting Hannon’s metaphilosophical pragmatism are given that show that the concept of knowledge that makes skepticism plausible is both interesting and useful.
9. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Notes on the Contributors
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10. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Logos and Episteme. Aims and Scope
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11. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 3
Notes to Contributors
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research articles
12. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Aaran Burns Scepticism without Knowledge-Attributions
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The sceptic says things like “nobody knows anything at all,” “nobody knows that they have hands,” and “nobody knows that the table exists when they aren't looking at it.” According to many recent anti-sceptics, the sceptic means to deny ordinary knowledge attributions. Understood this way, the sceptic is open to the charge, made often by Contextualists and Externalists, that he doesn't understand the way that the word “knowledge” is ordinarily used. In this paper, I distinguish a form of Scepticism that is compatible with the truth of ordinary knowledge attributions and therefore avoids these criticisms. I also defend that kind of Scepticism against the suggestion that it is philosophically uninteresting or insignificant.
13. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Olga Ramírez Calle Numbers, Empiricism and the A Priori
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The present paper deals with the ontological status of numbers and considers Frege´s proposal in Grundlagen upon the background of the Post-Kantian semantic turn in analytical philosophy. Through a more systematic study of his philosophical premises, it comes to unearth a first level paradox that would unset earlier still than it was exposed by Russell. It then studies an alternative path that, departing from Frege’s initial premises, drives to a conception of numbers as synthetic a priori in a more Kantian sense. On this basis, it tentatively explores a possible derivation of basic logical rules on their behalf, suggesting a more rudimentary basis to inferential thinking, which supports reconsidering the difference between logical thinking and AI. Finally, it reflects upon the contributions of this approach to the problem of the a priori.
14. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
R.M. Farley Casullo on Experiential Justification
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In A Priori Justification, Albert Casullo argues that extant attempts to explicate experiential justification—by stipulation, introspection, conceptual analysis, thought experimentation, and/or appeal to intuitions about hypothetical cases—are unsuccessful. He draws the following conclusion: “armchair methods” such as these are inadequate to the task. Instead, empirical methods should be used to investigate the distinction between experiential and non-experiential justification and to address questions concerning the nature, extent, and existence of the a priori. In this essay, I show that Casullo has not refuted armchair explications of experiential justification, in particular those that appeal to introspectively accessible phenomenology. I do this by presenting a phenomenal theory of experiential justification that (a) has a significant degree of initial plausibility and (b) survives Casullo’s general attack on such theories. As a result, a premise in the central argument for Casullo’s signature proposal concerning the a priori is undermined.
15. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Andrei Mărășoiu Justified by Thought Alone
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The new rationalists – BonJour and Bealer – have characterized one type of a priori justification as based on intellectual intuitions or seemings. I argue that they are mistaken in thinking that intellectual intuitions can provide a priori justification. Suppose that the proposition that a surface cannot be red and green all over strikes you as true. When you carefully consider it, you couldn't but realize that no surface could be both red and green all over. Ascertaining the truth of what you believe (when you believe that a surface cannot be red and green all over) requires conscious experiences of thinking. The character of such experiences (propositions’ striking you as true, and the sense of incoherence you would experience were they to be false) is what justifies your belief. It should follow that the justification for such propositions (and your believing them) is a posteriori, i.e., based on conscious experience. Your cognitive phenomenology plays a constitutive role in justifying your belief. Hence your belief is not a priori justified, contra the new rationalists.
16. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Daniel Rönnedal The Aporia of Omniscience
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This paper introduces a new aporia, the aporia of omniscience. The puzzle consists of three propositions: (1) It is possible that there is someone who is necessarily omniscient and infallible, (2) It is necessary that all beliefs are historically settled, and (3) It is possible that the future is open. Every sentence in this set is intuitively reasonable and there are prima facie plausible arguments for each of them. However, the whole set {(1), (2), (3)} is inconsistent. Therefore, it seems to be that case that at least one of the propositions in this set must be false. I discuss some possible solutions to the problem and consider some arguments for and against these solutions.
discussion notes/debate
17. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Frederik J. Andersen, Klemens Kappel Process Reliabilism, Prime Numbers and the Generality Problem
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This paper aims to show that Selim Berker’s widely discussed prime number case is merely an instance of the well-known generality problem for process reliabilism and thus arguably not as interesting a case as one might have thought. Initially, Berker’s case is introduced and interpreted. Then the most recent response to the case from the literature is presented. Eventually, it is argued that Berker’s case is nothing but a straightforward consequence of the generality problem, i.e., the problematic aspect of the case for process reliabilism (if any) is already captured by the generality problem.
18. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Jeffrey Hoops Knowledge, Certainty, and Factivity: A Possible Rapprochement
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In recent discussions in this journal, Moti Mizrahi defends the claim that knowledge equals epistemic certainty. Howard Sankey finds Mizrahi’s argument to be problematic, since, as he reads it, this would entail that justification must guarantee truth. In this article, I suggest that an account of the normativity of justification is able to bridge the gap between Mizrahi’s proposal and Sankey’s objections.
19. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Notes on the Contributors
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20. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Logos and Episteme. Aims and Scope
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