Renewed Acquaintance

Brie Gertler

in Introspection and Consciousness

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199744794
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199933396 | DOI:

Series: Philosophy of Mind Series

Renewed Acquaintance

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This chapter elaborates and defends a set of metaphysical and epistemic claims that comprise what is called the acquaintance approach to introspective knowledge of the phenomenal qualities of experience. The hallmark of this approach is the thesis that, in some introspective judgments about experience, (phenomenal) reality intersects with the epistemic, that is, with the subject’s grasp of that reality. While this approach is a descendant of Russell’s acquaintance theory, it is epistemically more modest than that theory. The chapter shows that the acquaintance approach’s hallmark thesis does not carry the ambitious epistemic implications often associated with acquaintance views. And the chapter defends that thesis from objections stemming from what is required for an epistemically substantial grasp of the phenomenal, and from Stalnaker’s worry that, if the thesis were true, information about the phenomenal would be incommunicable.

Keywords: acquaintance; epistemic justification; introspection; knowledge; phenomenal; phenomenal concepts; Bertrand Russell; self-knowledge

Chapter.  14852 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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