Southwest Philosophy Review

Volume 39, Issue 1, January 2023

Brian Kim
Pages 145-153

How to Be a Pragmatic Infallibilist

Infallibilism leads to skepticism and fallibilism is plagued by the threshold problem. In this narrative setting, the pragmatic turn in epistemology has been marketed as a way for fallibilists to address one of their central problems. While pragmatic versions of infallibilism have been left unexplored, I propose that going pragmatic also offers the infallibilist a way to address its main problem, the skeptical problem. Pragmatic infallibilism, however, is committed to a radical pragmatic view of epistemic certainty, where the strength of a subject’s epistemic state can vary depending upon the practical context. To make room for the plausibility of such a view, I discuss the role that the framing of decision problems can play in the evaluation of choices and evidence. And based on this discussion, I offer some suggestions about how we might develop a pragmatic version of infallibilism.