Radical Interpretation and Philosophical Scepticism

Barry Stroud

in Understanding Human Knowledge

Published in print July 2002 | ISBN: 9780199252138
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598500 | DOI:
 Radical Interpretation and Philosophical Scepticism

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An exploration of the possibility of drawing anti‐sceptical conclusions from Donald Davidson's discussions of radical interpretation and his accounts of belief and belief‐ascription. Stroud argues, against Davidson, that the truth of most of our beliefs cannot be derived solely from the fulfilment of the conditions of our attributing them to ourselves and others, at least not without a doubtful transcendental argument that would appear to depend on some form of idealism. However, Stroud sketches a Davidsonian anti‐sceptical strategy that demonstrates not the truth but what Stroud calls the ‘invulnerability’ of the beliefs in question.

Keywords: belief‐ascription; Donald Davidson; idealism; invulnerability; radical interpretation; scepticism; transcendental argument

Chapter.  11071 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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