Questions tagged [epistemology]

Epistemology is the study of knowledge, acquisition thereof, and the justification of belief in a given claim.

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Reductionism as explanation of facts

I was wondering why is so frequent to hear explanations in science relying on what -in philosophical terms- is called reductionism. Do you have any idea why explain and reduce it to minimal part of ...
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How are beliefs restricted by an objective reality?

Consider the following belief A human can survive if they don't drink water for 1000 days We knew from biology that this is practically improbable as there are very few people who can survive for ...
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Metaphysically, what comes before the cognitive ability to make distinctions?

Descartes, for example, makes the distinction between body and mind by recognizing the body as an idea born from 'extension' and the mind as an idea born from 'consciousness'. He further recognizes '...
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What are the main objections against solipsism?

I am looking logical arguments and scientific evidence that undermine this view.
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Was Kant right about space and time (and wrong about knowledge)?

According to Kant our empirical experience is synthesized from sensations through categories. Apparently, unconscious "productive ability of imagination" mediates the process using the schemes of ...
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Was Aquinas a foundationalist?

Foundationalism is, generally speaking, the belief that a group of undoubtable beliefs 'ground,' or 'justify' other beliefs. As of late, foundationalism has fallen out of favor in many different ...
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Does knowing imply knowing that you know? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Do we know whether we know something? I have come across this idea a few times now that knowing does not imply knowing that you know. However, I am having troubled ...
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135 views

Why “philosophy never ends” for the tractarian Wittgenstein?

In the Prototractatus Wittgenstein wrote an additional section (called 6.55) which is seen as a possible third solution to the matter of building a perfect system of logic. This conclusion was ...
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Measurement devices and empiricism

In the first physics lecture I ever visited, the professor shortly demonstrated the fallibility of our senses with a spinning disc optical illusion to justify the use of measurement devices. He didn't ...
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How is the concept of “beyond word” viewed in many school of thoughts?

This is my review on the concept of "beyond word": Taoism and Buddhism seems to share that wisdom can't be grasped intellectually. In Zen practice, the koans are presented as nonsensical questions so ...
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Nondisprovable Claims

I have been thinking about the following dialogue for some time. It consists of some arguments I've come up with for both sides, and includes the idea of Russel's teapot. Suppose X is a proposition ...
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Explaining Quine's dismissal of the circularity problem in naturalistic epistemology

In "Epistemology Naturalized", Quine acknowledges the possibility of the circularity criticism of naturalism, but goes on to say ..such scruples have little point once we have stopped dreaming of ...
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Can kantian categories only be applicated to objects given by the senses?

The question is inspired by the comments of this answer by @PédeLeão and I think it deserves a question of its own to have room for clarifying this. Possible candidates Kant, in German, has pretty (...
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Is there any relation between an Argument and corresponding conditional?

In my philosophy class, where we cover theory of knowledge, I leaned about Gettier problem. Gettier's counterexample to JTB is following: From A has Ford which is justified false belief, B can deduct ...
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Epistemology of “Creationism Debate”

Epistemologically, is there any difference between a belief in non-interventionist evolution and a belief in young-earth creationism? If so, what is it? I'm not interested in the question of whether ...
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Is there any study about how half-baked philosophies encourage maladaptive thoughts? [closed]

There are many schools of philosophy that advocate refuting perceived phenomena, for example: Taoism: the bad equals the good, why be afraid or avoid the bad ones? Science: before proving it ...
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How to prove that what we will know isn't true isn't true?

My apologies for the convoluted question. I'm still (kinda) arguing with someone that if we have knowledge then there are facts. One way I've argued for this, is by saying that what we will know isn'...
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Has the Problem of Induction been solved?

The problem as to acquiring knowledge about times where we cannot experiment/observe. For e.g, you haven't seen the future, so you cannot make any definitive statements, or rather, scientifically ...
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What do optical illusions, or other illusions, say about our perceptions or senses in general?

I guess I'm more looking for clarity here than anything else. I've been reading about the illusions that stage magicians perform, and also found web sites containing optical illusions, but I haven't ...
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Where did Kuhn draw a parallel with Quine's thesis of the indeterminacy of translation?

About Thomas S. Kuhn, In the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy I read: Early on Kuhn drew a parallel with Quine's thesis of the indeterminacy of translation (1970a, 202; 1970c, 268) Which is the ...
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What is the common term for 'epistemological preference'?

I got this term explained to me that was called epistemological preference which is basically your preference for acknowledging the truth. There are four categories: Truth by authority - this is ...
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149 views

Aside from logical representations, what are other ways philosophers approach representing knowledge?

Of course different arguments can be neatly spelled out in logical symbols, but logic isn't sufficient for all kinds of knowledge. I know the issue is represented in different ontologies in the ...
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300 views

What are some good examples of how structuralism is used in the humanities?

I'm aware that Levi-strauss used structuralist ideas in anthropology - are there any simple examples of how he used these ideas. I'm also aware of it being used in literature - how is that done. Are ...
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Why do some philosophers argue that we do not know, a priori, that something thinks?

The Cartesian argument seems to explicate the fact that I necessarily know that something thinks, and that I necessarily know that something thinks even if I don't checking the world to verify whether ...
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Is there an accepted term for the idea that: “an idea's validity is increased by the number of proponents”

Is there a field or term which can be used to describe conjecture on the notion that: The validity of an idea is related to the number of proponents/opponents of the idea. Such a field would ...
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What standards exist for developing a philosophical model?

Coming from the natural sciences, I typically see a scientific model as follows: A scientific model takes all available evidence and attempts to ascribe a relating structure to all this information ...
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Knowing whether a discipline is science or philosophy [duplicate]

There are certainly no clear boundaries within science and philosophy. Science is about knowledge of nature, hypothesis, tests and repetition, and philosophy is about knowledge generated purely by ...
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Difference between Science and Arts according to Mae Jemison

Here is a quotation from Mae Jemison: "Science provides an understanding of a universal experience. Arts provide a universal understanding of a personal experience." Could you help me making sense ...
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280 views

What is the ontological basis for sentience arising from complexity?

Recently I read a comment that most physicalists believe that some threshold of complexity must be surpassed prior to any sentience being exhibited. I've heard of similar ideas a lot, but I've never ...
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What is the word for… human thinking / imagination / understanding is limited by human experience

(Forgive my lack of accurate wording, English is not my first language, in addition I'm not a philosophy expert.) I cannot recall the word I have seen once, describing a theory where human ...
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Does Math, or analogically Language really have any impact on our “Thoughts”?

Here I see many say, language has an important impact on our thoughts. But according to this question, Foucault in the preface to The Order of Things wrote how he 'laughed out loud' when he ...