Fall 2010

Epistemology Seminar: Of Disagreement and Doubt

Listed in: Philosophy, as PHIL-70


Ekaterina Vavova (Section 01)


We are fallible creatures, prone to making all sorts of mistakes. How should we accommodate evidence of our own epistemic imperfection? Should such evidence lead us to doubt ourselves and our beliefs? Or are we rationally permitted to dismiss it? One way in which we might get evidence of our own error is through disagreement. The discovery that someone you respect disagrees with you can make you lose confidence in, and sometimes altogether abandon, your belief in the disputed proposition—but should it? Does disagreement provide evidence of error? Is it epistemically significant, or simply unpleasant? We will approach these questions by looking at current work on the epistemology of disagreement. This will lead us to more general issues about evidence and rationality that are central to both recent and traditional epistemology.

Limited to 15 students.  Fall semester.  Keiter-Mellon Fellow Vavova.

If Overenrolled: Priority will be given to seniors, then juniors, etc.


2017-18: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2010