•  308
    Against Fallibilism
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (4). 2011.
    In this paper I argue for a doctrine I call ?infallibilism?, which I stipulate to mean that If S knows that p, then the epistemic probability of p for S is 1. Some fallibilists will claim that this doctrine should be rejected because it leads to scepticism. Though it's not obvious that infallibilism does lead to scepticism, I argue that we should be willing to accept it even if it does. Infallibilism should be preferred because it has greater explanatory power than fallibilism. In particular, I …Read more
  •  188
    Evidentialism and skeptical arguments
    Synthese 189 (2): 337-352. 2012.
    Cartesian skepticism about epistemic justification (‘skepticism’) is the view that many of our beliefs about the external world – e.g., my current belief that I have hands – aren’t justified. I examine the two most influential arguments for skepticism – the Closure Argument and the Underdetermination Argument – from an evidentialist perspective. For both arguments it is clear which premise the anti-skeptic must deny. The Closure Argument, I argue, is the better argument in that its key premise i…Read more
  •  181
    Concessive knowledge attributions (CKAs) are knowledge attributions of the form ‘S knows p, but it’s possible that q’, where q obviously entails not-p (Rysiew, Nous (Detroit, Mich.) 35:477–514, 2001). The significance of CKAs has been widely discussed recently. It’s agreed by all that CKAs are infelicitous, at least typically. But the agreement ends there. Different writers have invoked them in their defenses of all sorts of philosophical theses; to name just a few: contextualism, invariantism, …Read more
  •  151
    Weakness of will as intention-violation
    European Journal of Philosophy 17 (1): 45-59. 2009.
    According to the traditional view of weakness of will, a weak-willed agent acts in a way inconsistent with what she judges to be best.1 Richard Holton has argued against this view, claiming that ‘the central cases of weakness of will are best characterized not as cases in which people act against their better judgment, but as cases in which they fail to act on their intentions’ (1999: 241). But Holton doesn’t think all failures to act on one’s prior intentions, or all revisings of intentions, ar…Read more
  •  143
    Why Williamson should be a sceptic
    Philosophical Quarterly 57 (229). 2007.
    Timothy Williamson's epistemology leads to a fairly radical version of scepticism. According to him, all knowledge is evidence. It follows that if S knows p, the evidential probability for S that p is 1. I explain Williamson's infallibilist account of perceptual knowledge, contrasting it with Peter Klein's, and argue that Klein's account leads to a certain problem which Williamson's can avoid. Williamson can allow that perceptual knowledge is possible and that all knowledge is evidence, while a…Read more
  •  119
    The Cookie Paradox
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 92 (2): 355-377. 2016.
    We’ve all been at parties where there's one cookie left on what was once a plate full of cookies, a cookie no one will eat simply because everyone is following a rule of etiquette, according to which you’re not supposed to eat the last cookie. Or at least we think everyone is following this rule, but maybe not. In this paper I present a new paradox, the Cookie Paradox, which is an argument that seems to prove that in any situation in which everyone is truly following the rule, no one eats any co…Read more
  •  119
    If one flips an unbiased coin a million times, there are 2 1,000,000 series of possible heads/tails sequences, any one of which might be the sequence that obtains, and each of which is equally likely to obtain. So it seems (1) 'If I had tossed a fair coin one million times, it might have landed heads every time' is true. But as several authors have pointed out, (2) 'If I had tossed a fair coin a million times, it wouldn't have come up heads every time' will be counted as true in everyday context…Read more
  •  112
    Safety, Skepticism, and Lotteries
    Erkenntnis 77 (1): 95-120. 2012.
    Several philosophers have claimed that S knows p only if S’ s belief is safe, where S's belief is safe iff (roughly) in nearby possible worlds in which S believes p, p is true. One widely held intuition many people have is that one cannot know that one's lottery ticket will lose a fair lottery prior to an announcement of the winner, regardless of how probable it is that it will lose. Duncan Pritchard has claimed that a chief advantage of safety theory is that it can explain the lottery intuition…Read more
  •  100
    Roger white’s argument against imprecise credences
    British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 64 (1): 69-77. 2013.
    According to the Imprecise Credence Framework (ICF), a rational believer's doxastic state should be modelled by a set of probability functions rather than a single probability function, namely, the set of probability functions allowed by the evidence ( Joyce [2005] ). Roger White ( [2010] ) has recently given an arresting argument against the ICF, which has garnered a number of responses. In this article, I attempt to cast doubt on his argument. First, I point out that it's not an argument again…Read more
  •  86
    Belief and certainty
    Synthese 194 (11): 4597-4621. 2017.
    I argue that believing that p implies having a credence of 1 in p. This is true because the belief that p involves representing p as being the case, representing p as being the case involves not allowing for the possibility of not-p, while having a credence that’s greater than 0 in not-p involves regarding not-p as a possibility.
  •  85
    Scepticism and Perceptual Justification (edited book)
    Oxford University Press. 2013.
    How can experience provide knowledge, or even justified belief, about the objective world outside our minds? This volume presents original essays by prominent contemporary epistemologists, who show how philosophical progress on foundational issues can improve our understanding of, and suggest a solution to, this famous sceptical question.
  •  47
    Intentions, plans, and weakness of will
    Southwest Philosophy Review 21 (1): 45-52. 2005.
  •  45
  •  15
    Judgment before principle: engagement of the frontoparietal control network in condemning harms of omission
    with Cushman
    Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience 7 888-895. 2012.
    Ordinary people make moral judgments that are consistent with philosophical and legal principles. Do those judgments derive from the controlled application of principles, or do the principles derive from automatic judgments? As a case study, we explore the tendency to judge harmful actions morally worse than harmful omissions (the ‘omission effect’) using fMRI. Because ordinary people readily and spontaneously articulate this moral distinction it has been suggested that principled reasoning may …Read more
  •  7
    Weakness of Will as Intention‐Violation
    European Journal of Philosophy 17 (1): 45-59. 2009.