Ideas from 'Epistemological Disjunctivism' by Duncan Pritchard [2012], by Theme Structure

[found in 'Epistemological Disjunctivism' by Pritchard,Duncan [OUP 2012,978-0-19-870896-1]].

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2. Reason / E. Argument / 1. Argument
My modus ponens might be your modus tollens
                        Full Idea: One philosopher's modus ponens is another philosopher's modus tollens.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 3.2)
                        A reaction: [Anyone know the originator of this nice thought?] You say A is true, and A proves B, so B is true. I reply that if A proves something as daft as B, then so much the worse for A. Ain't it the truth?
10. Modality / B. Possibility / 9. Counterfactuals
An improbably lottery win can occur in a nearby possible world
                        Full Idea: Low probability events such as lottery wins can occur in nearby possible worlds.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 2.n2)
                        A reaction: This seems to ruin any chance of mapping probabilities and counterfactuals in the neat model of nested possible worlds (like an onion). [Lewis must have thought of this, surely? - postcards, please]
11. Knowledge Aims / B. Certain Knowledge / 2. Common Sense Certainty
Moore begs the question, or just offers another view, or uses 'know' wrongly
                        Full Idea: The three main objections to Moore's common-sense refutation of scepticism is that it either begs the question, or it just offers a rival view instead of a refutation, or it uses 'know' in a conversationally inappropriate way.
                        From: report of Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 3.2) by PG - Db (ideas)
                        A reaction: [I deserve applause for summarising two pages of Pritchard's wordy stuff so neatly]
13. Knowledge Criteria / A. Justification Problems / 2. Justification Challenges / c. Knowledge closure
We can have evidence for seeing a zebra, but no evidence for what is entailed by that
                        Full Idea: The closure principle forces us to regard Zula as knowing that what she is looking at is not a cleverly disguised mule, and yet she doesn't appear to have any supporting evidence for this knowledge.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 2.3)
                        A reaction: [Zula observes a zebra in the zoo] Entailment is a different type of justification from perception. If we add fallibilism to the mix, then fallibility can increase as we pursue a string of entailments. But proper logic, of course, should not be fallible.
Favouring: an entailment will give better support for the first belief than reason to deny the second
                        Full Idea: The Favouring Principle says that if S knows two things, and that the first entails the second, then S has better evidence in support of her belief in the first than she has for denying the second.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 2.3)
                        A reaction: [his version is full of Greek letters, but who wants that stuff?] Pritchard concludes that if you believe in the closure principle then you should deny the favouring principle.
Maybe knowledge just needs relevant discriminations among contrasting cases
                        Full Idea: According to the 'contrastivist' proposal knowledge is to be understood as essentially involving discrimination, such that knowing a proposition boils down to having the relevant discriminatory capacities.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 2.6)
                        A reaction: Pritchard says this isn't enough, and we must also to be aware of supporting favouring evidence. I would focus on the concept of coherence, even for simple perceptual knowledge. If I see a hawk in England, that's fine. What if I 'see' a vulture?
13. Knowledge Criteria / A. Justification Problems / 3. Internal or External / a. Pro-internalism
Epistemic internalism usually says justification must be accessible by reflection
                        Full Idea: Typically, internal epistemic conditions are characterised in terms of a reflective access requirement.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 1.6)
                        A reaction: If your justification is straightforwardly visual, it is unclear what the difference would be between seeing the thing and having reflective access to the seeing.
13. Knowledge Criteria / A. Justification Problems / 3. Internal or External / b. Pro-externalism
Externalism is better than internalism in dealing with radical scepticism
                        Full Idea: Standard epistemic internalism faces an uphill struggle when it comes to dealing with radical scepticism, which points in favour of epistemic externalist neo-Mooreanism.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 3.3)
                        A reaction: I incline towards internalism. I deal with scepticism by being a fallibilist, and adding 'but you never know' to every knowledge claim, and then getting on with life.
13. Knowledge Criteria / A. Justification Problems / 3. Internal or External / c. Disjunctivism
Disjunctivism says perceptual justification must be both factual and known by the agent
                        Full Idea: Slogan for disjunctivism: perceptual knowledge is paradigmatically constituted by a true belief whose epistemic support is both factive (i.e. it entails the truth of the propositions believed) and reflectively accessible to the agent.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], Intro)
                        A reaction: I'm not a fan of externalism, but it could be that the factive bit achieves the knowledge, and then being able to use and answer for that knowledge may just be a bonus, and not an essential ingredient.
Metaphysical disjunctivism says normal perceptions and hallucinations are different experiences
                        Full Idea: Metaphysical disjunctivists hold that veridical perceptual experiences are not essentially the same as the experiences involved in corresponding cases involving illusion and (especially) hallucination.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 1.4)
                        A reaction: Metaphysical disjunctivism concerns what the experiences are; epistemological justification concerns the criteria of justification. I think. I wish Pritchard would spell things out more clearly. Indeed, I wish all philosophers would.
13. Knowledge Criteria / C. External Justification / 10. Anti External Justification
Epistemic externalism struggles to capture the idea of epistemic responsibility
                        Full Idea: A fundamental difficulty for epistemic externalist positions is that it is hard on this view to capture any adequate notion of epistemic responsibility.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], Intro)
                        A reaction: He never explains the 'responsibility', but I presume that would be like an expert witness in court, vouching for their knowledge.
13. Knowledge Criteria / D. Scepticism / 1. Scepticism
We assess error against background knowledge, but that is just what radical scepticism challenges
                        Full Idea: When faced with an error-possibility we can appeal to background knowledge, as long as the error-possibility does not call into question this background knowledge. The same is not true when we focus on the radical sceptical hypothesis.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 2.5)
                        A reaction: [reworded] Doubting everything simultaneously just looks like a mad project. If you doubt linguistic meaning, you can't even express your doubts.
13. Knowledge Criteria / D. Scepticism / 6. Scepticism Critique
Radical scepticism is merely raised, and is not a response to worrying evidence
                        Full Idea: Crucially, radical sceptical error-possibilities are never epistemically motivated, but are instead merely raised.
                        From: Duncan Pritchard (Epistemological Disjunctivism [2012], 3.5)
                        A reaction: In 'The Matrix' someone sees a glitch in the software (a cat crossing a passageway), and that would have to be taken seriously. Otherwise it is a nice strategy to ask why the sceptic is raising this bizzare possibility, without evidence.