Corrigibilism without Solidarity

Isaac Levi

in Pragmatism and Inquiry

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780199698134
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191742323 | DOI:
Corrigibilism without Solidarity

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Peirce, James, and Dewey agreed that the fruits of inquiry are liable to revision. But as long as the inquirer endorses these fruits for use as standards for judging what might be true and might be false, the inquirer is committed to refusing to rule them out as possibly false. According to the inquirer, the results of inquiry are corrigible (open to modification) but they are not fallible (possibly false). When inquirers disagree, they should invoke the views that they agree are true as evidence and seek through inquiry to settle the outstanding issues between them. Such inquiry is not a postmodernist quest for solidarity in the sense of Richard Rorty—i.e., as a quest for as much intersubjective agreement as possible to satisfy the desire to “extend the reference of ‘us’ as far as we can” (Rorty 1991, 23). It is not always obvious when one should open up one’s mind any more than it is when one should close it. Appealing to solidarity is no solution.

Keywords: corrigibilism; fallibilism; solidarity; postmodernist consensus

Chapter.  5880 words. 

Subjects: Metaphysics

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