•  699
    Against Credibility
    Australasian Journal of Philosophy 90 (1). 2012.
    How does the monitoring of a testifier's credibility by recipients of testimony bear upon the epistemic licence accruing to a recipient's belief in the testifier's communications? According to an intuitive and philosophically influential conception, licensed acceptance of testimony requires that recipients of testimony monitor testifiers with respect to their credibility. I argue that this conception, however, proves to be untenable when confronted with the wealth of empirical evidence bearing o…Read more
  •  614
    In what follows, I appeal to Charles Babbage’s discussion of the division of mental labor to provide evidence that—at least with respect to the social acquisition, storage, retrieval, and transmission of knowledge—epistemologists have, for a broad range of phenomena of crucial importance to actual knowers in their epistemic practices in everyday life, failed adequately to appreciate the significance of socially distributed cognition. If the discussion here is successful, I will have demonstrated…Read more
  •  204
    What our Rylean Ancestors Knew: More on Knowing How and Knowing That
    Austrian Ludwig Wittgenstein Society 11 328-330. 2003.
  •  123
    In this paper I discuss some underlying motivations common to most strands of experimental philosophy, noting that most forms of experimental philosophy have a commitment to the claim that certain empirical evidence concerning the level of agreement on intuitive judgments across cultures, ethnic groups or socioeconomic strata impugns the role that intuitions play in traditional “armchair” philosophy. I then develop an argument to suggest that, even if one were to grant the truth of the data addu…Read more
  •  113
    Personal responsibility and middle knowledge: a challenge for the Molinist
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 66 (2): 61-70. 2009.
    In this paper, I develop and discuss an argument intended to demonstrate that the Molinist notion of middle knowledge, and in particular the concept of counterfactuals of freedom, is incompatible with the notion of personal responsibility (for created creatures). In Sect. 1, I discuss the Molinist concepts of middle knowledge and counterfactuals of freedom. In Sect. 2, I develop an argument (henceforth, the Transfer of Negative Responsibility Argument, or TNRA) to the effect that, due to their c…Read more
  •  106
    Locke on Testimony: A Reexamination
    History of Philosophy Quarterly 26 (1). 2009.
    In this paper I focus on John Locke as a representative figure of English Enlightenment theorizing about the legitimacy of cognitive authority and examine the way in which a greater attention to the cultural milieu in which Locke worked can lead to a profound reexamination of his writings on cognitive authority. In particular, I suggest that an inattention to the rise of a culture of reading and the growing availability of books in Early Modern England has led historians of philosophy largely t…Read more
  •  96
    In this paper, I take up an argument advanced by Keith DeRose (Philosophical Review, 111:167–203, 2002) that suggests that the knowledge account of assertion provides the basis of an argument in favor of contextualism. I discuss the knowledge account as the conjunction of two theses—a thesis claiming that knowledge is sufficient to license assertion KA and one claiming that knowledge is necessary to license assertion AK. Adducing evidence from Stalnaker’s account of assertion, from conversationa…Read more
  •  67
    On the Possibility of Conceptually Structured Experience: Demonstrative Concepts and Fineness of Grain
    Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 53 (4): 383-397. 2010.
    In this paper I consider one of the influential challenges to the notion that perceptual experience might be completely conceptually structured, a challenge that rests on the idea that conceptual structure cannot do justice to the fineness of grain of perceptual experience. In so doing, I canvass John McDowell's attempt to meet this challenge by appeal to the notion of demonstrative concepts and review some criticisms recently leveled at McDowell's deployment of demonstrative concepts for this p…Read more
  •  65
    The epistemology of testimony has experienced a growth in interest over the last twenty-five years that has been matched by few, if any, other areas of philosophy. _Testimony: A Philosophical Introduction _provides an epistemology of testimony that surveys this rapidly growing research area while incorporating a discussion of relevant empirical work from social and developmental psychology, as well as from the interdisciplinary study of knowledge-creation in groups. The past decade has seen a nu…Read more
  •  60
    A partial defense of intuition on naturalist grounds
    Synthese 187 (2): 321-341. 2012.
    The debate concerning the role of intuitions in philosophy has been characterized by a fundamental disagreement between two main camps. The first, the autonomists, hold that, due to the use in philosophical investigation of appeals to intuition, most of the central questions of philosophy can in principle be answered by philosophical investigation and argument without relying on the sciences. The second, the naturalists, deny the possibility of a priori knowledge and are skeptical of the role of…Read more
  •  52
    Looks and the immediacy of visual objectual knowledge
    Analysis 77 (4): 741-750. 2017.
    In his recent paper ‘Knowing What Things Look Like’, Matthew McGrath offers a challenge to the idea that knowing an object by seeing it, ‘visual objectual knowledge’ is an instance of immediate knowledge. I offer supporters of the notion of immediate visual objectual knowledge two potential strategies for blocking McGrath’s argument: either by questioning McGrath’s claim about the role that knowing what an object looks like plays in visual objectual knowledge or by denying that any explanation o…Read more
  •  40
    An introduction to the theory of knowledge in a 24-lecture audio/video series with accompanying book.
  •  29
    Understanding Assertion: Lessons from the False Belief Task
    Language & Communication 29 (1): 47-60. 2009.
    This paper uses recent research in developmental psychology regarding the acquisition of the concept of belief in young children to explore the contrast between a disposition-based account of the principles underlying linguistic communication and the representative and highly influential intention-based accounts of assertional practice advanced by David Lewis and Donald Davidson. Indeed, evidence from recent work in developmental psychology would seem to suggest that disposition-based accounts a…Read more
  •  28
    Expanding the scope of reflective knowledge: From MINE to OURS
    Philosophical Issues 29 (1): 241-253. 2019.
    Ernest Sosa has suggested that we distinguish between animal knowledge, on the one hand, and reflective knowledge, on the other. Animal knowledge is direct, immediate, and foundationally structured, while reflective knowledge involves a knower's higher‐order awareness of her own mental states, and is structured by relations of coherence. Although Sosa's distinction is extremely appealing, it also faces serious problems. In particular, the sorts of processes that would be required for reflective …Read more
  • In the past two decades a debate has raged concerning the epistemic status of testimony---i.e., the verbal acquisition of information---between neo-Humean reductivists, who argue that testimony only provides one with reason to believe if one is capable of mounting an argument supporting the sincerity and reliability of one's informant, and Reidian non-reductivists , who argue that testimony is a epistemically basic source of justification and knowledge---and, as such, an independent source of re…Read more
  • Socially Distributed Cognition and the Epistemology of Testimony
    In Miranda Fricker, Peter Graham, David Henderson & Nikolaj Jang Pedersen (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Social Epistemology. pp. 87-95. forthcoming.
    Most discussions of the epistemology of testimony include personalist requirements. These include either requirements that stipulate certain features that individual testifiers must have in order to count as transmitters of knowledge, or that stipulate certain features that individual recipients of testimony must have in order to count as acquiring knowledge on the basis of that testimony. For example, in the former case, many views require that testifiers be competent and honest, whereas, in th…Read more