Saturday, March 31, 2007

Epistemic Norms and Natural Facts

I'm posting a new draft of my paper Epistemic Norms and Natural Facts, forthcoming in American Philosophical Quarterly. I am currently preparing a final version; any last-minute comments/corrections therefore very welcome. Speak now or forever ... publish embarassing refutations once the thing's in print.

Basically the paper presents, and points out some advantages of, a view which treats epistemic normativity in something like the way the Cornell realists treat ethical normativity.

4 comments:

bloggin the Question said...

"E1: S epistemically ought to believe p
are made true by the same states of affairs as claims of the form:
P3: p is probably true, in an obvious and salient way, given S’s state of information."
I take it this is the central claim. (I think the paper is great by the way)
I agree with the claim, though am worried that a "no oughts in nature" die hard would claim that P3 is no less epistemically normative than E1. But perhaps this is only because I do agree with the claim. My hope is that probability statements are best interpreted as normative statements about practical decisions. Then maximising utility becomes not an analogy, but the very same principle underlying epistemic norms.
Given S has E, S should believe X,
is bi conditionally related to:
prob X\E = n, where n is high enough for "probably x" to be true in context. "prob x = n" then can be interpreted subjectively, meaning that given that evidence, one should act in certain ways depending on expected utility. This is in effect a reduction of epistemic ought to instrumental ought.

Perezoso said...

Metaphysical realism--even of the Fregean sort--is merely an assumption. And doing some insta-Hume, nominalism certainly is as plausible an inference about ontology as is Realism. And that is not merely "philosophy" but concerns the precious foundationalism. Carnap--and physics as first philosophy--trumps the Fregean ghost..............But empiricism, from Hobbes to Carnap, has nevered played well in the analytical philosophy bidness.

Anonymous said...

Carrie--I just sent an e-mail message to your ANU account. I'm trying to contact you about this article, "Epistemic Norms and Natural Facts," so please look for my e-mail. Thanks! Greg Swope, gswope@pdcnet.org

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