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Against Overconfidence: Arguing for the Accessibility of Memorial Justification
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Philosophy.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5522-6777
(English)In: Synthese, ISSN 0039-7857, E-ISSN 1573-0964Article in journal (Refereed) Accepted
Abstract [en]

In this article, I argue that access internalism should replace preservationism, which has been called "a received view" in the epistemology of memory, as the standard position about memorial justification. My strategy for doing so is two-pronged. First, I argue that the considerations which motivate preservationism also support access internalism. Preservationism is mainly motivated by its ability to answer the explanatory challenges posed by the problem of stored belief and the problem of forgotten evidence. However, as I will demonstrate, access internalism also has the resources to provide plausible solutions to those problems. Second, I argue that preservationism faces a couple of problems which access internalism avoids. Doing so, I present a new scenario which, on the one hand, functions as a counterexample to preservationism, and, on the other hand, provides intuitive support for access internalism. Moreover, I also demonstrate how preservationism, in light of recent research in cognitive psychology, is vulnerable to skepticism about memorial justification, whereas access internalism remains unthreatened.

Keywords [en]
Accessibilism, Justification, Memory
National Category
Philosophy
Research subject
Philosophy
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-179084OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-179084DiVA, id: diva2:1393978
Available from: 2020-02-17 Created: 2020-02-17 Last updated: 2020-02-25
In thesis
1. Internalism and the Nature of Justification
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Internalism and the Nature of Justification
2020 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

There are many important dimensions of epistemic evaluation, one of which is justification. We don’t just evaluate beliefs for truth, reliability, accuracy, and knowledge, but also for justification. However, in the epistemological literature, there is much disagreement about the nature of justification and how it should be understood. One of the controversies that has separated the contemporary epistemological discourse into two opposing camps has to do with the internalism-externalism distinction. Whereas internalists defend certain core assumptions about justification from the pre-Gettier tradition, externalists generally think that the traditional conception is untenable and should be replaced.

In this compilation thesis, I argue for, defend, and develop a particular brand of internalism, both in general and with respect to specific sources of justification. In papers 1 and 2, I defend a couple of well-known arguments for mentalism and accessibilism. Moreover, I also point out how prominent versions of these theses are vulnerable to serious problems (e.g., about over-intellectualization and vicious regresses). Part of my goal in the first couple of papers is to figure out what commitments the internalist should take on in order to avoid the externalist's objections, while at the same time receiving support from considerations that have motivated internalism in the past. In papers 3 and 4, I start from the assumption that mentalism is true and attempt to answer the following questions: 1) which non-factive mental states can play a justification-conferring role with respect to empirical belief? And 2) why does this set of states play the epistemic role it does? In response to question 1, I argue that all and only one's beliefs and perceptual experiences have justificatory relevance. In response to question 2, I argue that one's beliefs and perceptual experiences are one's strongly representational states, and that strongly representational states necessarily provide support to certain empirical propositions. Having done so, I then defend mentalism about scientific evidence from a couple of prominent objections in the recent literature. Lastly, in papers 5 and 6, I argue for a particular brand of internalism about testimonial and memorial justification and show how that position has a dialectical advantage over its main competitors. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Philosophy, Stockholm University, 2020. p. 47
Keywords
Justification, Internalism, Evidence, Rationality, Testimony, Memory
National Category
Humanities and the Arts
Research subject
Philosophy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-179085 (URN)978-91-7911-066-6 (ISBN)978-91-7911-067-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2020-04-22, hörsal 7, hus D, Universitetsvägen 10 D, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 2: Manuscript. Paper 3: Manuscript. Paper 4: Manuscript. Paper 6: Accepted.

Available from: 2020-03-30 Created: 2020-02-17 Last updated: 2020-03-18Bibliographically approved

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