Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Epistemic Existentialism

  • Laura Frances Callahan (a1)

Abstract

Subjectivist permissivism is a prima facie attractive view. That is, it's plausible to think that what's rational for people to believe on the basis of their evidence can vary if they have different frameworks or sets of epistemic standards. In this paper, I introduce an epistemic existentialist form of subjectivist permissivism, which I argue can better address “the arbitrariness objection” to subjectivist permissivism in general. According to the epistemic existentialist, it's not just that what's rational to believe on the basis of evidence can vary according to agents’ frameworks, understood as passive aspects of individuals’ psychologies. Rather, what's rational to believe on the basis of evidence is sensitive to agents’ choices and active commitments (as are frameworks themselves). Here I draw on Chang's work on commitment and voluntarist reasons. The epistemic existentialist maintains that what's rational for us to believe on the basis of evidence is, at least in part, up to us. It can vary not only across individuals but for a single individual, over time, as she makes differing epistemic commitments.

Copyright

Corresponding author

*Corresponding author. Email: laura.callahan24@gmail.com

References

Hide All
Aristotle, (1939). De Caelo. trans. Guthrie, W.K.C.. Loeb Classical Library series. London: Heinemann.
Basu, R. (2018). ‘Can Beliefs Wrong?Philosophical Topics 46(1), 117.
Berker, S. (2018). ‘A Combinatorial Argument against Practical Reasons for Belief.’ Analytic Philosophy 59, 427–70.
Boghossian, P.A. (2006). Fear of Knowledge: Against Relativism and Constructivism. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Brueckner, A. and Bundy, A. (2012). ‘On ‘Epistemic Permissiveness’.’ Synthese 188(2), 165–77.
Callahan, L.F. (Ms a). ‘Grounding the Normativity of Epistemic Rationality: Responsivism.’
Callahan, L.F. (Ms b). ‘Epistemic Underdetermination.’
Chang, R. (2002). ‘The Possibility of Parity.’ Ethics 112, 659–88.
Chang, R. (2013 a). ‘Grounding Practical Normativity: Going Hybrid.Philosophical Studies 164(1), 163–87.
Chang, R. (2013 b). ‘Commitments, Reasons, and the Will.’ In Shafer-Landau, R. (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics 8, pp. 74113. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Chang, R. (2015). ‘Transformative Choices.’ Res Philosophica 92(2), 237–82.
Christensen, D. (2010). ‘Higher-Order Evidence.’ Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81(1), 185215.
Christensen, D. (2016). ‘Conciliation, Uniqueness and Rational Toxicity.’ Noûs 50(3), 584603.
Decker, J. (2012). ‘Disagreement, Evidence, and Agnosticism.’ Synthese 187(2), 753–83.
Douven, I. (2009). ‘Uniqueness Revisited.’ American Philosophical Quarterly 46(4), 347–61.
Feldman, R. (2007). ‘Reasonable Religious Disagreements.’ In Antony, L. (ed.), Philosophers Without Gods, pp. 194214. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Fleisher, W. (2018). ‘Rational Endorsement.’ Philosophical Studies 175(10), 2649–75.
Foley, R. (1987) [1947]. The Theory of Epistemic Rationality. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Greco, D. and Hedden, B. (2016). ‘Uniqueness and Metaepistemology.Journal of Philosophy 113(8), 365–95.
Horowitz, S. (2014). ‘Immoderately Rational.’ Philosophical Studies 167(1), 4156.
Joyce, J. (2005). ‘How Probabilities Reflect Evidence.’ Philosophical Perspectives 19(1), 153–78.
Kelly, T. (2014). ‘Evidence can be Permissive.’ In Steup, M., Turri, J. and Sosa, E. (eds), Contemporary Debates in Epistemology, 2nd edn, pp. 298311. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
Kierkegaard, S. (1971) [1813–1855]. Either/Or (1st Princeton paperback edn). Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Kopec, M. and Titelbaum, M.G. (2016). ‘The Uniqueness Thesis.’ Philosophy Compass 11(4), 189200.
Korsgaard, C. (1996). The Sources of Normativity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Levinstein, B.A. (2017). ‘Permissive Rationality and Sensitivity.’ Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94(2), 342–70.
Lewis, D. (1971). ‘Immodest Inductive Methods.’ Philosophy of Science 38(1), 5463.
Meacham, C.J.G. (2014). ‘Impermissive Bayesianism.’ Erkenntnis 79(6), 1185–217.
Moss, S. (2015). ‘Credal Dilemmas.’ Noûs 49(4), 665–83.
Neta, R. (2007). ‘In Defense of Epistemic Relativism.’ Episteme 4(1), 3048.
Pritchard, D. (2009). ‘Defusing Epistemic Relativism.’ Synthese 166(2), 397412.
Rinard, S. (2017). ‘No Exception for Belief.’ Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94(1), 121–43.
Rosen, G. (2001). ‘Nominalism, Naturalism, Epistemic Relativism.Noûs 35(s15), 6991.
Rosen, G. (2007). ‘The Case Against Epistemic Relativism.’ Episteme 4(1), 1029.
Schoenfield, M. (2014). ‘Permission to Believe: Why Permissivism is True and What it Tells us About Irrelevant Influences on Belief.’ Noûs 48(2), 193218.
Simpson, R.M. (2016). ‘Permissivism and the Arbitrariness Objection.’ Episteme 14(4), 519–38.
Sosa, E. (2007). A Virtue Epistemology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Sosa, E. (2015). Judgment and Agency. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Titelbaum, M. (2010). ‘Not Enough There There.’ Philosophical Perspectives 24(1), 477528.
White, R. (2005). ‘Epistemic Permissiveness.’ Philosophical Perspectives 19, 445–59.
White, R. (2007). ‘Epistemic Subjectivism.’ Episteme 4(1), 115–29.
White, R. (2014). ‘Evidence Cannot be Permissive.’ In Steup, M., Turri, J. and Sosa, E. (eds), Contemporary Debates in Epistemology, 2nd edn, pp. 312–23. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
Willard-Kyle, C. (2017). ‘Do Great Minds Really Think Alike?Synthese 194(3), 9891026.

Keywords

Epistemic Existentialism

  • Laura Frances Callahan (a1)

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed