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Philosophy Research Archives

Volume 12, 1986/1987

Adam Thompson
Pages 261-265

Counterexamples to Nozick’s Account of Transmission of Knowledge via Proof

This paper reveals and corrects a flaw in Nozick’s account of knowledge via inference. First, two counterexamples are provided by considering cases which would not typically be regarded as instances of knowledge although they are counted as such by Nozick’s theory. Then the general form of these counterexamples is given. From this it is apparent that the counterexamples show that Nozick’s theory fails to take account of cases in which the subject infers q from p, but in counterfactual situations some proposition other than p would entail q. In view of this, the theory is then revised to eliminate the counterexamples.

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