Disagreement, Skepticism and the Dialectical Conception of Justification

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It is a common intuition that at least in some cases disagreement has skeptical consequences: the participants are not justifi ed in persisting in their beliefs. I will argue that the currently popular non-dialectical and individualistic accounts of justifi cation, such as evidentialism and reliabilism, cannot explain this intuition and defend the dialectical conception of justifi cation that can explain it. I will also argue that this sort of justifi cation is a necessary condition of knowledge by
relying on Craig’s genealogy of the concept of knowledge. I will then respond to the accusation that the dialectical conception leads to radical skepticism. My response is partly concessive. It does lead to skepticism in areas where controversy prevails, such as philosophy, politics and religion, but this sort of skepticism is quite intuitive. Finally, I deal with the objection that my defense of skepticism about philosophy is self-refuting.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal for the Study of Skepticism
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)3-17
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 2011
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 611 Philosophy
  • disagreement ; dialectic ; genealogy ; justifi cation ; skepticism

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