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4. Responses to Gettier Cases: Infallibilism and Virtue Epistemology
About this Lecture
In this previous module, we looked at some potential ways around the Gettier cases – the no false lemmas approach and the causal/reliabilist analysis of knowledge. In this module, we focus on: (i) one issue with the causal/reliabilist analysis of knowledge, i.e. the fact that the notion of causation is no clearer than the notion of knowledge itself; (ii) another Gettier case that appears to undermine the causal/reliabilist analysis – the so-called ‘barn case’; (iii) the infallibilist analysis of knowledge, which holds that you know something if you have a true belief where your evidence allows you to rule out all possible alternatives; (iv) the problems with the infallibilist analysis of knowledge; (v) the concept of virtue epistemology, and the advantages and disadvantages of this account of knowledge; and (vi) a summary of the different analyses of knowledge we have seen so far, and the fact that each one comes with its own set of problems.
In this course, Dr Arif Ahmed (University of Cambridge) explores the question ‘What is knowledge?’. In the first module, we introduce the idea of ‘analysing’ knowledge and arrive at the classical, tripartite definition of knowledge as justified true belief. In the second module, we introduce a series of examples known as ‘Gettier cases’ that seem to undermine the analysis of knowledge as justified true belief. In the third and fourth modules, we explore several analyses of knowledge that attempt to get round the Gettier problem, and show the advantages and disadvantages of each, before turning in the fifth question to the possibility that there is no satisfactory analysis of knowledge, and that we should change our approach entirely. This module includes three such new approaches – that of W. V. Quine, that of Edward Craig, and that of Timothy Williamson.
Dr Arif Ahmed is Reader in Philosophy at the University of Cambridge. He writes mainly on decision theory, but also has an interest in religion and has debated the subject against William Lane Craig, Tariq Ramadan, Rowan Williams and others. Some of his recent publications include (as editor) Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations: A Critical Guide (2010), Evidence, Decision and Causality (2014) and (as editor) Classical Philosophical Arguments: Newcomb's Problem (2018).
Cite this Lecture
Ahmed, A. (2021, January 02). What is Knowledge? - Responses to Gettier Cases: Infallibilism and Virtue Epistemology [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/what-is-knowledge/responses-to-gettier-cases-infallibilism-and-virtue-epistemology
Ahmed, Arif. "What is Knowledge? – Responses to Gettier Cases: Infallibilism and Virtue Epistemology." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 02 Jan 2021, https://www.massolit.io/courses/what-is-knowledge/responses-to-gettier-cases-infallibilism-and-virtue-epistemology