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Logos & Episteme

Volume 3, Issue 3, 2012

Dale Jacquette
Pages 429-447

Justification and Truth Conditions in the Concept of Knowledge

The traditional concept of propositional knowledge as justified true belief (JTB), even when modified, typically in its justification condition, to avoid Gettier-type counterexamples, remains subject to a variety of criticisms. The redefinition proposed here puts pressure more specifically on the concept of truth as redundant in light of and inaccessible beyond the most robust requirements of best justification. Best-J is defined as justification for believing in a proposition’s truth where there is no better countermanding justification for believing instead the proposition’s negation. A pragmatic perspective argues that truth is unnecessary and unattainable as a condition of knowledge beyond the requirement for practically attainable best justified belief. The key argument with respect to the eliminability of the truth condition in favor of a properly tailored justification condition is that there is nothing we do or can do in trying to satisfy the truth condition for knowledge beyond considering the epistemic merits of the justification that a believer accepts in coming to believe that the proposition is true.

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