Epistemology by simplest definition is the theory of knowledge and one of the things it addresses is the source of knowledge. On the other hand we know that rationalism (deduction) and empiricism (induction) are two fundamental ways of learning and gaining knowledge.

Put them together, can we conclude that rationalism and empiricism are both members of a larger field called epistemology. In other words, can we mathematically claim that rationalism and empiricism are subsets of the epistemology super-set?

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    Please cite some sources. The terms you are asking about are technical and their definitions are not as trivial and uncontroversial as you imply.
    – Joseph Weissman
    Jul 20, 2011 at 23:56
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    You may wish to pose this more simply and lose some of your definitional assumptions: how are rationalism and empiricism related to modern epistemology? Should epistemology be seen as incorporating both?, etc.
    – Joseph Weissman
    Jul 21, 2011 at 0:07
  • Thanks @Joseph. You actually said what I had in mind. I changed the question. :) Jul 21, 2011 at 5:33
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    Isn't this general reference? See Epistemology at wikipedia to start.
    – Mitch
    Jul 21, 2011 at 12:37
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    This is a very confused question. To begin with, rationalism is not deduction, and empiricism is not induction. Furthermore, epistemology is not (a particular) theory of knowledge, but rather, the branch of philosophy concerned with theories of knowledge. Would it be too much to ask that questioners check out the relevant encyclopedia articles before posting here? If we correct those definitions, then yes, the question is trivially true: rationalism and empiricism are both epistemologies, and thus fall within the (larger) domain of epistemology-- but this is in no way a mathematical claim. Jul 30, 2011 at 12:45


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