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Lecture 11

PHIL102 Lecture Notes - Possible World, Fallibilism

2 Pages
41 Views
Winter 2017

Department
Philosophy at St Joseph's College
Course Code
PHIL102
Professor
Alexander Rueger
Lecture
11

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Traditional view of knowledge: justified true belief (JTB)
Descartes: justification requires certainty which guarantees truth-> we have very little knowledge
Fallibilism: justification requires less certainty, e.g probability-> better chance of knowing things
Fallibilism allows for example:
1. On the basis of available evidence the probability that p is true is 80% p is true-> we know that p
2. That p us true is 80% p is false-> we do not know that p
Gettier cases: justified true beliefs that do not count as knowledge -> refutation of the traditional view
of knowledge as JTB
General structure of gettier cases:
Bad luck (broken clock) is compensated for by good luck ( I happen to look at the clock at the right time
that it displays even though it would display that time any time I would look at it) and we end up with a
JTB
Nozick's proposal to the understanding of knowledge as belief that tracks the truth
I know that p, not just in case I believe p and it is true in the actual circumstances but 1. I would not have
believed it if it were false in other circumstances and 2. I would have also have still believed p had it
been true in slightly different circumstances
Nozick's conditions for knowledge
I know that p if:
1. I believe p
2. P is true
3. If it were false I would not have believed it
4. If it were true in slightly different circumstances I would also believe p were still true
Requirements 3 and 4 are counterfactual conditionals
If a were the case, then b would be the case = although a is not actually the case, if It were the case,
then b would be the case
This is different from entailment if a then b, in entailment if a were false, then the claim if A then b is
true, but not all counterfactual conditionals are true
How can we tell when a counterfactual is true?
If this table were made of copper, it would be a good electrical conductor
True in the actual world, if in the closest possible world in which the table is made of copper it also is a
good conductor.
If there had been snow in the valley, I would have gone skiing
True if in the closest possible world in which it snows I go skiing
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Description
find more resources at oneclass.com Traditional view of knowledge: justified true belief (JTB) Descartes: justification requires certainty which guarantees truth-> we have very little knowledge Fallibilism: justification requires less certainty, e.g probability-> better chance of knowing things Fallibilism allows for example: 1. On the basis of available evidence the probability that p is true is 80% p is true-> we know that p 2. That p us true is 80% p is false-> we do not know that p Gettier cases: justified true beliefs that do not count as knowledge -> refutation of the traditional view of knowledge as JTB General structure of gettier cases: Bad luck (broken clock) is compensated for by good luck ( I happen to look at the clock at the right time that it displays even though it would display that time any time I would look at it) and we end up with a JTB Nozick's proposal to the understanding of knowledge as belief that tracks the truth I know that p, not just in case I believe p and it is true in the actual circumstances but 1. I would not have believed it if it were false in other circumstances and 2. I would have also have still believed p had it been true in slightly different circumstances Nozick's conditions for knowledge I know that p if: 1. I believe p 2. P is true 3. If it were false I would not have believed it 4. If it were true in slightly different circumstances I would also believe p were still true Requirements 3 and 4 are counterfactual conditionals If a were the case, then b would be
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