, Volume 153, Issue 1, pp 19-28
Date: 14 Dec 2010

Sosa on easy knowledge and the problem of the criterion

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access
This is an excerpt from the content

Sosa’s Reflective Knowledge (2009) is enlightening, penetrating, and far too rich to be engaged with in its entirety here. I have chosen to focus on the final chapter, in which Sosa draws upon various of the distinctions and doctrines from earlier chapters to address the Problem of Easy Knowledge and the Problem of the Criterion. Although our symposium is entitled “Author Meets Critics,” my own contribution might more aptly be entitled “Author Meets Querist,” as what I offer is an exposition of Sosa along with a sprinkling of questions about whether I have understood things correctly and how things might be developed further.

The problem of easy knowledge

The Problem of easy knowledge, as articulated in Cohen (2002), may be set out as a dilemma that arises depending on the stance we take on the following thesis:

  • KRel: A potential knowledge source K can yield knowledge for S only if S knows that K is reliable.

  • If we reject KRel, we make knowledge too easy; if we affirm it, we make knowledge