I am looking for a reference which explains the differences between these conceptions of knowledge (and potentially others).

Ideally, I prefer an academic paper authored by a respected scholar.

3 Answers 3


I recommend looking at the SEP article on "Knowledge How" here. It gives a great overview of the distinction between the three kinds of knowledge you are asking about. As a followup, the bibliography at the end has several excellent papers on the subject. Lastly, you might want to look at the Knowledge Argument against Physicalism here. It turns out that the main positions in the Knowledge Argument divide on whether knowledge of experience is propositional knowledge or non-propositional knowledge.


Here you can find the text of Bertrand Russell's classic treatment "Knowledge by Acquaintance and Knowledge by Description". This version is a chapter from Russell's The Problems of Philosophy (1912).


http://www.iep.utm.edu/epistemo/ has some useful information. If you scroll down to the bottom, you can find citations which will give you information about which particular philosophers contribute to such distinctions. The particular book where I learned this is What Can We Know?: An Introduction to Theory of Knowledge By Louis P. Pojman

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