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Logos & Episteme

Volume 12, Issue 4, 2021

Steven Diggin
Pages 413-426

Everything is Self-Evident

Plausible probabilistic accounts of evidential support entail that every true proposition is evidence for itself. This paper defends this surprising principle against a series of recent objections from Jessica Brown. Specifically, the paper argues that: (i) explanationist accounts of evidential support convergently entail that every true proposition is self-evident, and (ii) it is often felicitous to cite a true proposition as evidence for itself, just not under that description. The paper also develops an objection involving the apparent impossibility of believing P on the evidential basis of P itself, but gives a reason not to be too worried about this objection. Establishing that every true proposition is self-evident saves probabilistic accounts of evidential support from absurdity, paves the way for a non-sceptical infallibilist theory of knowledge and has distinctive practical consequences.