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Propositional knowledge

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  1. 1

    Edmund Gettier, “Is Justified True Belief Knowledge?” Analysis, 23:121–23 (1963). For discussion of the issues raised by Gettier, see Michael Clark, “Knowledge and Grounds: A Comment on Mr. Gettier's Paper,”Analysis, 24:46–47 (1969) ; Ernest Sosa, “The Analysis of ‘Knowledge That P,’”Analysis, 25:1–8 (1965); John Turk Saunders and Narayan Champawat, “Mr. Clark's Definition of ‘Knowledge,’”Analysis, 25:8–9 (1965); Keith Lehrer, “Knowledge, Truth, and Evidence,”Analysis, 25:168-75 (1965) Gilbert Harman, “Lehrer on Knowledge,”Journal of Philosophy, 63:241-47 (1966); Israel Scheffler,Conditions of Knowledge (Chicago: Scott, Forsman, 1965); Roderick M. Chisholm,Theory of Knowledge (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1966), p. 23; Alvin Goldman, “A Causal Theory of Knowing,”Journal of Philosophy, 64:357-72 (1967) ; Brian Skyrms, “The Explication of ‘X Knows That P,’”Journal of Philosophy, 64:373-89 (1967).

  2. 2

    Bertrand Russell,Human Knowledge: Its Scope and Limits (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1948), p. 154.

  3. 3

    Scheffler,Conditions of Knowledge, p. 112.

  4. 4

    Compare Lehrer, “Knowledge, Truth, and Evidence,” p. 174.

  5. 5

    See Harman, “Lehrer on Knowledge.” See also Nicholas Rescher,Hypothetical Reasoning (Amsterdam: North-Holland, New York: Humanities, 1964). And compare my review article “Hypothetical Reasoning,”Journal of Philosophy, 64:293–305 (1967).

  6. 6

    See Roderick M. Chisholm, Theory of Knowledge, Chapter I. Compare Roderick Firth, “Ultimate Evidence,”Journal of Philosophy, 53:732–39 (1956), and “Chisholm and the Ethics of Belief,”Philosophical Review, 68:493–506 (1959); also Herbert Heidelberger, “On Defining Epistemic Expressions,” Journal of Philosophy, 60:344-48 (1963).

  7. 7

    In contradistinction to my own earlier effort (Analysis, 25:1–8 (1965) ), the present analysis is not recursive. Furthermore, it does not suffer from essential dependence upon an obscureceteris paribus clause. It should be noted, also, that the definition of a set fully rendering evident a proposition to a subject does not exclude the possibility that such a set be infinite, and hence does not commit us to the view that all knowledge must have a foundation.

  8. 8

    I have in mind particularly the definitions previously offered by Clark, Lehrer, Chisholm, and myself. See note 1 for the references.

  9. 9

    The reader should be warned that my talk of chains of justification and of defective links is only shorthand for the earlier, more careful formulations. I do hope, however, that it gives a not-too-misleading overview of what I have tried to do.

  10. 10

    Compare Goldman, “A Causal Theory of Knowing,” pp. 368-70.

  11. 11

    Compare Skyrms, “The Explication of ‘X Knows That p,’” pp. 381 and 387.

  12. 12

    I am indebted to Robert Binkley, Joseph Camp, Herbert Heidelberger, and, especially, Roderick M. Chisholm, for illuminating discussion of the problems I have treated. I wish also to thank Howard Smokler, my commentator when I read an earlier version of this paper at the 1966 annual meeting of the Eastern Division of the A.P.A.

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Sosa, E. Propositional knowledge. Philos Stud 20, 33–43 (1969). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02224943

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