The Source of Scepticism

Duncan Pritchard

in Epistemic Luck

Published in print March 2005 | ISBN: 9780199280384
Published online April 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191602290 | DOI:
The Source of Scepticism

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I maintain that the neo-Moorean response to scepticism is unable, by itself at any rate, to completely resolve the sceptical problem. The reason for this is that the contemporary discussion of scepticism has misunderstood what the source of this problem is, and thus even the most plausible of the main anti-sceptical theories in the literature misses its intended target. To illustrate this, I contrast the closure-based template sceptical argument with its analogue argument expressed in terms of the ‘underdetermination’ principle that can be found in ancient Pyrrhonian sceptical writings, and which merely demands that one’s evidence should favour one’s beliefs over incompatible alternatives. I show how the latter argument brings to the fore just what is wrong with the contemporary debate regarding scepticism, which is its failure to respond to the specifically internalist and evidentialist character of the sceptical doubt.

Keywords: assertion; closure; principle of; epistemic externalism/internalism; epistemology; evidence; neo-Mooreanism; Pyrrhonism; scepticism; underdetermination, principle of

Chapter.  9719 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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