Free Epistemic Essays and Papers

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    Coherence and Epistemic Rationality

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    Coherence and Epistemic Rationality This paper addresses the question of whether probabilistic coherence is a requirement of rationality. The concept of probabilistic coherence is examined and compared with the familiar notion of consistency for simple beliefs. Several reasons are given for thinking rationality does not require coherence. Finally, it is argued that incoherence does not necessarily involve fallacious reasoning. Most work in epistemology treats epistemic attitudes as bivalent

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    Consistency and Epistemic Probability

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    Consistency and Epistemic Probability ABSTRACT: Is consistency always epistemically virtuous? In this paper, I examine one threat to the traditional view that consistency is a minimum requirement for rational belief. Central to the argument is the notion of epistemic probability, understood as the degree of support or confirmation provided by the total available evidence. My strategy in examining this argument is to apply analogous reasoning to carefully tailored examples. The conclusions which

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    Worlds and Epistemic Possibilities ABSTRACT: This paper develops an individualistic, belief-based account for a limited class of epistemic possibility statements. Section I establishes the need for such an account by reviewing a recent version of the majority view (the "Relevant Community Account") and contesting two key assumptions. I argue that some epistemic possibilities are belief-based-contra the assumption that all are knowledge-based. Against the assumption that all epistemic possibility

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    WVO Quine's Epistemic Paradigm

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    WVO Quine's Epistemic Paradigm Since its publication in 1969, Quine's seminal essay entitled Epistemology Naturalized has had a polarizing effect on pursuits in this field. Many have rejected the naturalist approach to epistemology on the grounds that it is mere relativism (see below), while others have celebrated Quine's program for articulating an empirical approach to epistemology. In what follows, I will endeavour to provide a clean explanation of some of the central features of Quine's naturalism

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    Evidential Basis in Epistemic Justification

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    The Significance and Priority of Evidential Basis in Epistemic Justification ABSTRACT:There are various approaches to epistemology as well as to the philosophy of science. The attempt to naturalize them is the newest approach. In the naturalistic framework, epistemology turns out to be identical with the philosophy of science. The main characteristic of both naturalized epistemology and naturalized philosophy of science is their methodological monism. Therefore, both of these meta-level areas

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    Circularity and Stability

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    Circularity and Stability William Alston argues that there is no way to show that any of our basic sources of belief is reliable without falling into epistemic circularity, i.e. relying at some point on premises that are themselves derived from the very same source. His appeal to practical rationality is an attempt to evaluate our sources of belief without relying on beliefs that are based on the sources under scrutiny and thus without just presupposing their reliability. I argue that this attempt

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    Humanity Educating Philosophy ABSTRACT: In what follows, I focus on the partiality and fallibility of each of us as individuals, and explore what that means for us as epistemic agents. When we examine the tradition of Western European thought, we note that most epistemological theories assume individuals can know the answer, and are able to critique what is passed down to others as socially constructed knowledge. Many have made the argument that while humanity can be deceived, one individual

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    count as a priori. Then, I show that under various possible construals of a priori, the incompatibilist argument would be invalid: either a fallacy of equivocation or an argument without a plausible closure principle guaranteeing transmission of epistemic status from premises to conclusion. Finally, I maintain that the only possible construal of the property of being knowable a priori that avoids invalidity is one that fails to generate the intended reductio. I Compatibilism, or the attempt

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    Epistemology and the Material Environment

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    epistemological accounts, namely that of essentialism, constructivism, and pragmatism, all reveal some serious defects if related to the recognition of materials. In order to responsibly manage our material environment, a more realistic estimation of our epistemic abilities and prospects is suggested. Introduction: The primacy of epistemology Since a couple of years we may witness a growing philosophical interest in matter(s), material substances, or material beings. (1) Far from their Aristotelean-Thomistic

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    proof of an external world. In opposition to Moore’s opinions will be found three main arguments: firstly that all of Moore’s evidence is based upon sensory input, secondly that the truth of one fact based on the truth of another fact forms an Epistemic Circle in this case, and finally that the evidence out forth by Moore, even if proved, does not necessarily prove the fact that he is attempting to prove. Moore’s “Proof of an External World” is based on the fact that he has two hands. Moore’s

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