Chapter

The Opposing Arguments

Albert Casullo

in A Priori Justification

Published in print April 2003 | ISBN: 9780195115055
Published online May 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199786190 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195115058.003.0006
 The Opposing Arguments

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The leading arguments against the existence of a priori knowledge are addressed. The opposing arguments fall into three broad categories: conceptual arguments, which offer an analysis of the concept of a priori knowledge and allege that no cases of knowledge satisfy the conditions in the analysis; radical empiricist arguments, which offer radical empiricist accounts of knowledge of propositions alleged to be knowable only a priori; and incompatibility arguments, which maintain that a priori knowledge is incompatible with epistemic naturalism. This chapter contends that the negative arguments fail: the conceptual arguments impose implausible conditions on a priori knowledge; the radical empiricist accounts do not establish that the propositions in question are not also known a priori; and the incompatibility arguments fail to show that a priori knowledge is incompatible with either of the two leading forms of epistemic naturalism: philosophical and scientific.

Keywords: a priori; conceptual argument; incompatibility argument; epistemic naturalism; philosophical naturalism; radical empiricist; scientific naturalism

Chapter.  16291 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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