Cover of Logos & Episteme
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research articles
1. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Javier Anta Make Information in Science Meaningful Again
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Although the everyday notion of information has clear semantic properties, the all-pervasive technical concept of Shannon information was defended being a non-semantic concept. In this paper I will show how this measure of information was implicitly ‘semantized’ in the early 1950s by many authors, such as Rothstein's or Brillouin's, in order to explain the knowledge dynamics underlying certain scientific practices such as measurement. On the other hand, I will argue that the main attempts in the literature to develop a quantitative measure of semantic information to clarify science and scientific measurements, such as Carnap-Bar-Hillel, or Dretske, will not successfully achieve this philosophical aim for several reasons. Finally, I will defend the use of a qualitative notion of semantic information within the information-theoretical framework MacKay to assess the informational dynamics underlying scientific practices, particularly measurements in statistical mechanics.
2. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
J. Spencer Atkins Epistemic Norms, the False Belief Requirement, and Love
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Many authors have argued that epistemic rationality sometimes comes into conflict with our relationships. Although Sarah Stroud and Simon Keller argue that friendships sometimes require bad epistemic agency, their proposals do not go far enough. I argue here for a more radical claim—romantic love sometimes requires we form beliefs that are false. Lovers stand in a special position with one another; they owe things to one another that they do not owe to others. Such demands hold for beliefs as well. Two facets of love ground what I call the false belief requirement , or the demand to form false beliefs when it is for the good of the beloved: the demand to love for the right reasons and the demand to refrain from doxastic wronging. Since truth is indispensable to epistemic rationality, the requirement to believe falsely, consequently, undermines truth norms. I demonstrate that, when the false belief requirement obtains, there is an irreconcilable conflict between love and truth norms of epistemic rationality: we must forsake one, at least at the time, for the other.
3. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Hamed Bikaraan-Behesht Methodological Naturalism and Reflexivity Requirement
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Methodological naturalists regard scientific method as the only effective way of acquiring knowledge. Quite the contrary, traditional analytic philosophers reject employing scientific method in philosophy as illegitimate unless it is justified by the traditional methods. One of their attacks on methodological naturalism is the objection that it is either incoherent or viciously circular: any argument that may be offered for methodological naturalism either employs a priori methods or involves a vicious circle that ensues from employing the very method that the argument is aimed to show its credentials. The charge of circularity has also been brought against the naturalistic arguments for specific scientific methods; like the inductive argument for induction and the abductive argument for the inference to the best explanation. In this paper, I respond to the charge of circularity using a meta-methodological rule that I call ‘reflexivity requirement.’ Giving two examples of philosophical works, I illustrate how the requirement has already been considered to be necessary for self-referential theories. At the end, I put forward a meta-philosophical explanation of the naturalism-traditionalism debate over the legitimate method of philosophy.
4. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Andreas Stephens Consistency and Shifts in Gettier Cases
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Two Gettier cases are described in detail and it is shown how they unfold in terms of reflective and reflexive desiderata. It is argued that the Gettier problem does not pose a problem for conceptions of knowledge as long as we are consistent in how we understand justification and knowledge. It is only by reading the cases with a reflective understanding of justification but a reflexive understanding of knowledge, without acknowledging that this takes place, that the cases become ‘problems.’
5. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Ron Wilburn What is the Relation between Semantic and Substantive Epistemic Contextualism?
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Epistemic Contextualism is generally treated as a semantic thesis that may or may not have epistemological consequences. It is sometimes taken to concern only knowledge claims (as the assertion that the word “know” means different things in different contexts of use). Still, at other times it is taken to regard the knowledge relation itself (as the assertion that knowledge itself has no single univocal nature). Call the former view Semantic EC, the latter view Substantive EC, and the idea that the plausibility of Semantic EC presupposes that of Substantive EC, the “Presupposition Thesis.” Numerous authors argue against the Presupposition Thesis on the grounds that an understanding of the nature of knowledge is no more required to understand the meaning of knowledge assertions than an understanding of the self, for instance, is needed to understand the meaning of sentences containing “I.” These authors then offer additional arguments for the same conclusion, using further comparisons between “know” and other indexicals, as well as between “know” and quantifiers, gradable and modal adjectives. Herein, I defend the Presupposition Thesis by arguing against these authors’ claims (based as they are on these types of comparisons) that Semantic EC is plausible without the supposition of Substantive EC.
discussion notes/debate
6. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Jakob Koscholke Conjunction Closure without Factivity: Reassessing the Hybrid Paradox
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Francesco Praolini has recently put pressure on the view that justified believability is closed under conjunction introduction. Based on what he calls ‘the hybrid paradox,’ he argues that accepting the principle of conjunction closure for justified believability, quite surprisingly, entails that one must also accept the principle of factivity for justified believability, i.e. that there are no propositions that are justifiably believable and false at the same time. But proponents of conjunction closure can do without factivity, as I argue in this short note. A less demanding principle is available.
7. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Notes on the Contributors
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8. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Logos and Episteme. Aims and Scope
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9. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 3
Notes to Contributors
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research articles
10. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Christopher T. Buford Stranded Runners: On Trying to Bring Justification Home
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Those who endorse a knowledge-first program in epistemology claim that rather than attempting to understand knowledge in terms of more fundamental notions or relations such as belief and justification, we should instead understand knowledge as being in some sense prior to such concepts and/or relations. If we suppose that this is the correct approach to theorizing about knowledge, we are left with a residual question about the nature of those concepts or relations, such as justification, that were thought to be first but are now second. Jonathan Jenkins Ichikawa has recently proposed that we understand justification in terms of potential knowledge. Ichikawa combines his view of knowledge and justification with what initially seems to be a natural complement, epistemological disjunctivism. While Ichikawa focuses on hallucination, I shift the focus to illusion. I argue that the combination of justification as potential knowledge and epistemological disjunctivism entails that perceptual beliefs that arise from illusions are not justified.
11. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Filip Čukljević Why Rip Matters?: Reexamining the Problem of Cognitive Dynamics
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The aim of this paper is to reexamine the importance of Rip van Winkle’s case for the problem of cognitive dynamics. First I shall present the main problem of cognitive dynamics. Then I shall explain the relevance of Rip’s case to this problem. After that I shall provide a short presentation of the main solutions to this problem. I shall explicate the problem concerning the manner in which philosophers who propose those solutions defend their response to the question of Rip’s case. My argument shall be that they defend their response either in overly dogmatic or in circular way. Finally, I shall suggest a way out of that problem.
12. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Jonas Karge A Modified Supervaluationist Framework for Decision-Making
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How strongly an agent beliefs in a proposition can be represented by her degree of belief in that proposition. According to the orthodox Bayesian picture, an agent's degree of belief is best represented by a single probability function. On an alternative account, an agent’s beliefs are modeled based on a set of probability functions, called imprecise probabilities. Recently, however, imprecise probabilities have come under attack. Adam Elga claims that there is no adequate account of the way they can be manifested in decision-making. In response to Elga, more elaborate accounts of the imprecise framework have been developed. One of them is based on supervaluationism, originally, a semantic approach to vague predicates. Still, Seamus Bradley shows that some of those accounts that solve Elga’s problem, have a more severe defect: they undermine a central motivation for introducing imprecise probabilities in the first place. In this paper, I modify the supervaluationist approach in such a way that it accounts for both Elga’s and Bradley’s challenges to the imprecise framework.
13. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
B.J.C. Madison Reliabilists Should Still Fear the Demon
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In its most basic form, Simple Reliabilism states that: a belief is justified iff it is formed as the result of a reliable belief-forming process. But so-called New Evil Demon (NED) cases have been given as counterexamples. A common response has been to complicate reliabilism from its simplest form to accommodate the basic reliabilist position, while at the same time granting the force of NED intuitions. But what if despite initial appearances, Simple Reliabilism, without qualification, is compatible with the NED intuition? What we can call the Dispositionalist Response to the New Evil Demon problem is fascinating because it contends just that: Simple Reliabilism is fully compatible with the NED intuition. It is claimed that all we need to do to recognize their compatibility is appreciate that reliability is a dispositional property. In this paper I shall critically evaluate the Dispositionalist proposal.
14. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Ryan Ross Alleged Counterexamples to Uniqueness
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Kopec and Titelbaum collect five alleged counterexamples to Uniqueness, the thesis that it is impossible for agents who have the same total evidence to be ideally rational in having different doxastic attitudes toward the same proposition. I argue that four of the alleged counterexamples fail and that Uniqueness should be slightly modified to accommodate the fifth example.
15. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Michael J. Shaffer Can Knowledge Really be Non-factive?
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This paper contains a critical examination of the prospects for analyses of knowledge that weaken the factivity condition so that knowledge implies only approximate truth.
16. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Joby Varghese A Functional Approach to Characterize Values in the Context of ‘Values in Science’ Debates
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This paper proposes a functional approach to characterize epistemic and nonepistemic values. The paper argues that epistemic values are functionally homogeneous since (i) they act as criteria to evaluate the epistemic virtues a hypothesis ought to possess, and (ii) they validate scientific knowledge claims objectively. Conversely, non-epistemic values are functionally heterogeneous since they may promote multiple and sometimes conflicting aims in different research contexts. An incentive of espousing the functional approach is that it helps us understand how values can operate in appropriate and inappropriate ways in scientific research and inappropriate influences can eventually be prevented. The idea is to argue that since non-epistemic values are functionally heterogeneous, they cannot provide objective reasons for the acceptance of a hypothesis. However, their involvement is necessary in certain research contexts and the problem is the involvement of these need not be always legitimate. By analyzing a case from chemical research, I demonstrate that how non-epistemic values might influence scientific research and, then, I go on to demonstrate that how a proper understanding of the functions of different kinds of values might promote the attainment of multiple goals of a particular research in a legitimate and socially relevant way.
17. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Erratum Notice
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18. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Notes on the Contributors
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19. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Logos and Episteme. Aims and Scope
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20. Logos & Episteme: Volume > 12 > Issue: 2
Notes to Contributors
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