Chapter

Knowledge and Reasons

Jeremy Fantl and Matthew McGrath

in Knowledge in an Uncertain World

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780199550623
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722684 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199550623.003.0004
Knowledge and Reasons

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This chapter provides a principled argument for a pragmatist link between knowledge and action. The main conclusion is the thesis (KJ) that what you know is warranted enough to justify you in action, belief, or anything else, i.e., to justify you in φ-ing, for any φ. KJ is defended on the basis of two premises: 1) the thesis (KR) that what you know is warranted enough to be a reason you have to φ, for any φ; and 2) the thesis (Safe Reasons) that if something is a reason you have to φ, then it is warranted enough to justify you in φ-ing. KJ is a more precise rendering of the intuitive ‘idle doubts’ thesis discussed in chapters 1 and 2. It is shown that, while KJ alone does not entail pragmatic encroachment, it does when combined with fallibilism.

Keywords: knowledge; reasons; justification; principled argument; fallibilism; pragmatic encroachment

Chapter.  17597 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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