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Philosophical Studies

, Volume 174, Issue 4, pp 1039–1046 | Cite as

On Sharon and Spectre’s argument against closure

  • Juan ComesañaEmail author
Article

Introduction

Sharon and Spectre give the best argument against closure that I know of, and they are to be commended for bringing clarity to a discussion often enmeshed in obscurity. Nevertheless, I think that their argument proves less than they advertise.

Sharon and Spectre’s ultimate target is the following closure principle, taken from Williamson (2000) via Hawthorne (2005):

(CP) Necessarily, if S knows p, competently deduces q from p, and thereby comes to believe q, while retaining knowledge of p throughout, then S knows q.

Crucial to their argument against CP is another closure principle about evidence (I omit qualifications that won’t matter for our purposes):

(CE) Necessarily, if e is evidence for p for S and p entails q, then e is evidence for q for S.

Sharon and Spectre’s master argument is the following:
  1. 1.

    CE is false.

     
  2. 2.

    If CE is false, then CP is false.

    Therefore,

     
  3. 3.

    CP is false.

     
I have doubts about both premises of this argument. Let’s start with the first premise.

Is...

Keywords

Rational Confidence Alternative Conception Atomic Proposition Gettier Case Contingent Truth 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

References

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.TucsonUSA

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