more from Catherine Z. Elgin

Single Idea 8618

[catalogued under 13. Knowledge Criteria / B. Internal Justification / 5. Coherentism / a. Coherence as justification]

Full Idea

The best explanation of the coherence of 'Middlemarch' lies in the novelist's craft. Coherence conduces to epistemic acceptability only when the best explanation of the coherence of a constellation of claims is that they are (at least roughly) true.


'Middlemarch' is a novel by George Eliot

Gist of Idea

Coherence is a justification if truth is its best explanation (not skill in creating fiction)


Catherine Z. Elgin (Non-foundationalist epistemology [2005], p.160)

Book Reference

'Contemporary Debates in Epistemology', ed/tr. Steup,M/Sosa,E [Blackwell 2005], p.160

A Reaction

Yes. This combines my favourite inference to the best explanation (the favourite tool of us realists) with coherence as justification, where coherence can, crucially, have a social dimension. I begin to think this is the correct account of justification.