Chapter

Internalism and Externalism

Laurence Bonjour

in The Oxford Handbook of Epistemology

Published in print November 2002 | ISBN: 9780195130058
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833481 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195130057.003.0008
Internalism and Externalism

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In “Internalism and Externalism,” Laurence BonJour suggests that the contemporary epistemological debate over internalism and externalism concerns the formulation of the justification or warrant condition in an account of knowledge. The internalist requires that for a belief to meet this condition, all of the necessary elements must be cognitively accessible to the believer, whereas the externalist claims that at least some such elements do not need to be accessible to the believer. BonJour gives an overview of this dispute. He suggests that the opposition between the two views is less straightforward than has usually been thought. He proposes, in addition, that each of them has valuable roles to play in major epistemological issues, even though the internalist approach is more fundamental in an important way.

Keywords: Laurence BonJour; cognitive access; externalism; internalism; justification; reliabilism; warrant

Chapter.  14485 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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