What the metasemantics of know is not

  • Peter van ElswykEmail author


Epistemic contextualism in the style of Lewis (in Aust J Philos 74:549–567, 1996) maintains that ascriptions of knowledge to a subject vary in truth with the alternatives that can be eliminated by the subject’s evidence in a context. Schaffer (in Philos Stud 119:73–103, 2004, in Oxford Stud Epistemol 1:235–271, 2005, in Philos Phenomenol Res 75:383–403, 2007, in Philos Issues 18(1):1–19, 2008, in: Schaffer, Loewer (eds) A companion to David Lewis, pp 473–490. Wiley, Hoboken, 2015), Schaffer and Knobe (in Noûs 46:675–708, 2012), and Schaffer and Szabó (in Philos Stud 168(2):491–543, 2014) hold that the question under discussion or qud always determines these alternatives in a context. This paper shows that the qud does not perform such a role for know and uses this result to draw a few lessons about the metasemantics of context-sensitivity.


Epistemic contextualism Question under discussion qud Contrastivism Knowledge Metasemantics 


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Philosophy DepartmentUniversity of Wisconsin-MilwaukeeMilwaukeeUSA

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