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Synthese

, Volume 157, Issue 3, pp 321–335 | Cite as

The defeasible nature of coherentist justification

  • Staffan Angere
Article

Abstract

The impossibility results of Bovens and Hartmann (2003, Bayesian epistemology. Oxford: Clarendon Press) and Olsson (2005, Against coherence: Truth, probability and justification. Oxford: Oxford University Press.) show that the link between coherence and probability is not as strong as some have supposed. This paper is an attempt to bring out a way in which coherence reasoning nevertheless can be justified, based on the idea that, even if it does not provide an infallible guide to probability, it can give us an indication thereof. It is further shown that this actually is the case, for several of the coherence measures discussed in the literature so far. We also discuss how this affects the possibility to use coherence as a means of epistemic justification.

Keywords

Coherence Probabilistic measures Impossibility results Generalized quantification 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of PhilosophyRoyal Institute of TechnologyStockholmSweden

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