Brown University
Department of Philosophy
PhD, 2003
Tucson, Arizona, United States of America
Areas of Specialization
Areas of Interest
  •  476
    Williamson on Gettier Cases and Epistemic Logic
    Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 56 (1): 15-29. 2013.
    Timothy Williamson has fruitfully exploited formal resources to shed considerable light on the nature of knowledge. In the paper under examination, Williamson turns his attention to Gettier cases, showing how they can be motivated formally. At the same time, he disparages the kind of justification he thinks gives rise to these cases. He favors instead his own notion of justification for which Gettier cases cannot arise. We take issue both with his disparagement of the kind of justification that …Read more
  •  369
    Evidentialist Reliabilism
    Noûs 44 (4): 571-600. 2010.
    I argue for a theory that combines elements of reliabilism and evidentialism.
  •  271
    Perceptual reasons
    Philosophical Studies 173 (4): 991-1006. 2016.
    The two main theories of perceptual reasons in contemporary epistemology can be called Phenomenalism and Factualism. According to Phenomenalism, perceptual reasons are facts about experiences conceived of as phenomenal states, i.e., states individuated by phenomenal character, by what it’s like to be in them. According to Factualism, perceptual reasons are instead facts about the external objects perceived. The main problem with Factualism is that it struggles with bad cases: cases where perceiv…Read more
  •  263
    Is Evidence of Evidence Evidence?
    with Eyal Tal
    Noûs 51 (1): 95-112. 2017.
    We examine whether the "evidence of evidence is evidence" principle is true. We distinguish several different versions of the principle and evaluate recent attacks on some of those versions. We argue that, whatever the merits of those attacks, they leave the more important rendition of the principle untouched. That version is, however, also subject to new kinds of counterexamples. We end by suggesting how to formulate a better version of the principle that takes into account those new counterexa…Read more
  •  229
    Unsafe Knowledge
    Synthese 146 (3): 395-404. 2005.
    Ernest Sosa has argued that if someone knows that p, then his belief that p is “safe”. and Timothy Williamson has agreed. In this paper I argue that safety, as defined by Sosa, is not a necessary condition on knowledge – that we can have unsafe knowledge. I present Sosa’s definition of safety and a counterexample to it as a necessary condition on knowledge. I also argue that Sosa’s most recent refinements to the notion of safety don’t help him to avoid the counterexample. I consider three replie…Read more
  •  218
    Rationality and Truth
    In Julien Dutant & Fabian Dorsch (eds.), The New Evil Demon, Oxford University Press. forthcoming.
    The traditional view in epistemology is that we must distinguish between being rational and being right (that is also, by the way, the traditional view about practical rationality). In his paper in this volume, Williamson proposes an alternative view according to which only beliefs that amount to knowledge are rational (and, thus, no false belief is rational). It is healthy to challenge tradition, in philosophy as much as elsewhere. But, in this instance, we think that tradition has it right. In…Read more
  •  211
    Having False Reasons
    In Clayton Littlejohn & John Turri (eds.), Epistemic Norms, Oxford University Press. pp. 59-80. 2014.
  •  206
    Is Evidence Knowledge?
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (2): 447-454. 2010.
    We argue that if evidence were knowledge, then there wouldn’t be any Gettier cases, and justification would fail to be closed in egregious ways. But there are Gettier cases, and justification does not fail to be close in egregious ways. Therefore, evidence isn’t knowledge.
  •  204
    Whither Evidentialist Reliabilism?
    In Kevin McCain (ed.), Believing in Accordance with the Evidence, Springer. pp. 307-25. 2018.
    Evidentialism and Reliabilism are two of the main contemporary theories of epistemic justification. Some authors have thought that the theories are not incompatible with each other, and that a hybrid theory which incorporates elements of both should be taken into account. More recently, other authors have argued that the resulting theory is well- placed to deal with fine-grained doxastic attitudes (credences). In this paper I review the reasons for adopting this kind of hybrid theory, paying att…Read more
  •  195
    A Plea for Falsehoods
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 100 (2): 247-276. 2020.
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, EarlyView.
  •  189
    Evidence of evidence is evidence
    with Eyal Tal
    Analysis 75 (4): 557-559. 2015.
    Richard Feldman has proposed and defended different versions of a principle about evidence. In slogan form, the principle holds that ‘evidence of evidence is evidence’. Recently, Branden Fitelson has argued that Feldman’s preferred rendition of the principle falls pray to a counterexample related to the non-transitivity of the evidence-for relation. Feldman replies arguing that Fitelson’s case does not really represent a counterexample to the principle. In this note, we argue that Feldman’s prin…Read more
  •  180
    Justified vs. warranted perceptual belief: Resisting disjunctivism
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (2): 367-383. 2005.
    In this paper I argue that McDowell’s brand of disjunctivism about perceptual knowledge is ill-motivated. First, I present a reconstruction of one main motivation for disjunctivism, in the form of an argument that theories that posit a “highest common factor” between veridical and non-veridical experiences must be wrong. Then I show that the argument owes its plausibility to a failure to distinguish between justification and warrant (where “warrant” is understood as whatever has to be added to t…Read more
  •  178
    The diagonal and the demon
    Philosophical Studies 110 (3). 2002.
    Reliabilism about epistemic justification - the thesis that what makes a belief epistemically justified is that it was produced by a reliable process of belief-formation - must face two problems. First, what has been called "the new evil demon problem", which arises from the idea that the beliefs of victims of an evil demon are as justified as our own beliefs, although they are not - the objector claims - reliably produced. And second, the problem of diagnosing why skepticism is so appealing des…Read more
  •  169
    Epistemic Pragmatism
    Res Philosophica 90 (2): 237-260. 2013.
    By “epistemic pragmatism” in general I will understand the claim that whether propositions instantiate certain key epistemic properties (such as being known orbeing justifiably believed) depends not just on factors traditionally recognized as epistemic, but also on pragmatic factors, such as how costly it would be to the subject if the proposition were false. In what follows I consider two varieties of epistemic pragmatism. According to what I shall call moderate epistemic pragmatism, how much e…Read more
  •  157
    We Are (Almost) All Externalists Now
    Philosophical Perspectives 19 (1): 59-76. 2005.
    In this paper I argue against Mentalism, the claim that all the factors that contribute to the epistemic justification of a doxastic attitude towards a proposition by a subject S are mental states of S. My objection to mentalism is that there is a special kind of fact (what I call a "support fact") that contributes to the justification of any belief, and that is not mental. My argument against mentalism, then, is the following: Anti-mentalism argument: 1. If mentalism is true, then support facts…Read more
  •  155
    Knowledge and Subjunctive Conditionals
    Philosophy Compass 2 (6): 781-791. 2007.
    What relation must hold between a fact p and the corresponding belief that p for the belief to amount to knowledge? Many authors have recently proposed that the relation can be captured by subjunctive conditionals. In this paper I critically evaluate the main proposals along those lines
  •  155
    Can We Believe for Practical Reasons?
    Philosophical Issues 25 (1): 189-207. 2015.
  •  151
    Difference‐Making in Epistemology
    with Carolina Sartorio
    Noûs 48 (2): 368-387. 2014.
  •  149
  •  132
    Normative Requirements and Contrary-to-Duty Obligations
    Journal of Philosophy 112 (11): 600-626. 2015.
    I argue that normative requirements should be interpreted as the conditional obligations of dyadic deontic logic. Semantically, normative requirements are conditionals understood as restrictors, the prevailing view of conditionals in linguistics. This means that Modus Ponens is invalid, even when the premises are known
  •  128
    Easy Knowledge Makes No Difference: Reply to Wielenberg
    with Carolina Sartorio
    Logos and Episteme 6 (2). 2015.
    We have recently proposed a diagnosis of what goes wrong in cases of ‘easy-knowledge.’ Erik Wielenberg argues that there are cases of easy knowledge thatour proposal cannot handle. In this note we reply to Wielenberg, arguing that our proposal does indeed handle his cases.
  •  121
    What lottery problem for reliabilism?
    Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90 (1): 1-20. 2009.
    It can often be heard in the hallways, and occasionally read in print, that reliabilism runs into special trouble regarding lottery cases. My main aim in this paper is to argue that this is not so. Nevertheless, lottery cases do force us to pay close attention to the relation between justification and probability.
  •  119
    Could there be exactly two things?
    Synthese 162 (1). 2008.
    Many philosophers think that, necessarily, any material objects have a fusion (let’s call that doctrine “Universalism”). In this paper I point out a couple of strange consequences of Universalism and related doctrines, and suggest that they are strange enough to constitute a powerful argument against those views
  •  107
    Empirical justification and defeasibility
    Synthese 198 (Suppl 7): 1771-1786. 2018.
    Two truisms about empirical justification are that experience plays a crucial role in it and that it is defeasible. There are, of course, different ways of developing these truisms into philosophical theories. I favor one particular view about the role of experience in empirical justification which may be thought to lead to problems in accommodating its defeasibility. My aim in this paper is to argue that the problems are illusory, based on an entrenched misconception how defeaters work.
  •  102
    On Sharon and Spectre’s argument against closure
    Philosophical Studies 174 (4): 1039-1046. 2017.
  •  88
    On a Puzzle About Withholding
    Philosophical Quarterly 63 (251): 374-376. 2013.
    I discuss Turri's puzzle about withholding. I argue that attention to the way in which evidence can justify withholding dissolves the puzzle