An Introduction to the Theory of Knowledge by Dan O'Brien

By Dan O'Brien

An creation to the idea of data courses the reader in the course of the key matters and debates in modern epistemology. Lucid, finished and available, it really is a great textbook for college kids who're new to the topic and for college undergraduates. The publication is split into 5 elements. half I discusses the idea that of information and distinguishes among types of wisdom. half II surveys the assets of data, contemplating either a priori and a posteriori wisdom. elements III and IV offer an in-depth dialogue of justification and scepticism. the ultimate a part of the publication examines our alleged wisdom of the earlier, different minds, morality and God. O'Brien makes use of enticing examples in the course of the e-book, taking many from literature and the cinema. He explains advanced concerns, comparable to these about the inner most language argument, non-conceptual content material, and the hot riddle of induction, in a transparent and obtainable means. This textbook is a useful advisor to modern epistemology.

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Extra resources for An Introduction to the Theory of Knowledge

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And I shall say: “games” form a family’ (1953, §§66–7). If there is not, then the philosophical analysis of KNOWLEDGE should be abandoned. That is, of course, if we accept the suggested rejection of analysis. It should be stressed that the suggestions of sections 6 and 7 are not widely adopted. Even if this is ultimately misguided, justification will remain an important epistemological notion in its own right, and part III of this book is important even if you have found sections 6 and 7 of this chapter persuasive.

The conditionals of the phenomenalist, however – those that describe certain regularities in our experience – do not have any deeper explanation; they are brute: nothing further can be said about why they hold. I come to believe that there are other flesh and blood creatures in the world through perceiving their bodies, and I come to see some of these creatures as thinkers through watching their actions and listening to their utterances. There are no conditional statements that describe the relation between sensations considered in isolation from certain physical aspects of the perceiver and of the world.

Leibniz, 1981, p. On learning to use your powers of reasoning you become able to derive certain truths, truths that you are not explicitly taught, and truths that are therefore innate in the sense that you are disposed to acquire them from birth. Perceptual beliefs could also be considered innate in this sense because we have an innate capacity to acquire them: we are born with sensory apparatus and are genetically disposed to develop certain perceptual and belief-forming mechanisms. Empiricism, then, does not rule out innate knowledge in this sense; it could be an empirical fact that it is something we possess.

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