Year 2015, Volume 5 , Issue 1, Pages 17 - 29 2015-07-13

Epistemic Options in the Face of Epistemic Barriers

Murat ARICI [1] , Murat ARICI [2]


Many philosophers in analytic tradition have attempted to examine the notion of ‘epistemic limits’. “Are we cognitively/epistemologically limited beings?” is a question that is answered positively in many philosophical debates. It is an uncontroversial fact that human beings face several types of epistemic barriers during their lifetime. The more significant question “What kind of epistemic position do/should we take towards epistemic barriers?” is less examined than the former. There are only a few options to take a position. Agnostic stance, which has been defended as a respectable epistemic position, is one of those. Appealing to ways other than rational and empirical methods is another. This paper, chiefly focusing on the latter question, first criticizes the agnostic stance on the grounds that it is neither compatible with human epistemic nature, nor practical in several circumstances. To justify such a claim, the paper builds several hypothetical scenarios, and through these scenarios, it  reaches the conclusion that appealing to other ways of forming beliefs on what is beyond the epistemic barriers is epistemologically more tenable than taking an agnostic stance in many circumstances.

Epistemic barrier, epistemic limit, agnosticism, knowledge, belief, belief acquisition.
  • Fodor, J. (1983). The Modularity of Mind: An Essay on Faculty Psychology. Cambridge, Massachusets: MIT Press.
  • Kant I. (1998). Critique of Pure Reason (trans. P. Guyer & A. W. Wood). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Kreines, J. (2007). Between the Bounds of Experience and Divine Intuition: Kant's Epistemic Limits and Hegel's Ambitions. Inquiry, 50 (3), 306-334.
  • Magnus, P. (2005). Peirce: Underdetermination, Agnosticism, and Related Mistakes. Inquiry, 48 (1), 26-37.
  • McGinn, C. (1993). Problems in Philosophy: The Limits of Inquiry. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.
  • Nagel, T. (1986). The View from Nowhere. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Plato (1997). Republic (trans. G. M. A. Grube). Complete Works (ed. J. M. Cooper). Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing.
  • Rellihan, M. (2005). Epistemic Boundedness and the Universality of Thought. Philosophical Studies, 125 (2), 219-250.
  • Rosenkranz, S. (2007). Agnosticism as a Third Stance. Mind, 461, 55-104.
  • Williamson, T. (2000). Knowledge and its Limits. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Wittgenstein, L. (1974). Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus (trans. D. F. Pears & B. F. McGuinness). London & New York: Routledge.
Primary Language en
Journal Section Articles
Authors

Author: Murat ARICI

Author: Murat ARICI

Dates

Publication Date : July 13, 2015

APA ARICI, M , ARICI, M . (2015). Epistemic Options in the Face of Epistemic Barriers. Beytulhikme An International Journal of Philosophy , 5 (1) , 17-29 . DOI: 10.18491/bijop.63634