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Philosophia

, Volume 45, Issue 1, pp 349–357 | Cite as

A Note Concerning Infinite Regresses of Deferred Justification

  • Paul D. Thorn
Article
  • 251 Downloads

Abstract

An agent’s belief in a proposition, E0, is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification just in case the belief that E0 is justified, and the justification for believing E0 proceeds from an infinite sequence of propositions, E0, E1, E2, etc., where, for all n ≥ 0, E n+1 serves as the justification for E n . In a number of recent articles, Atkinson and Peijnenburg claim to give examples where a belief is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification. I argue here that there is no reason to regard Atkinson and Peijnenburg’s examples as cases where a belief is so justified. My argument is supported by careful consideration of the grounds upon which relevant beliefs are held within Atkinson and Peijnenburg’s examples.

Keywords

Infinitism Foundationalism Epistemic justification Probabilistic justification 

Notes

Acknowledgements

Work on this article was supported by DFG Grant SCHU1566/9-1 as part of the priority programme “New Frameworks of Rationality” (SPP 1516). For helpful comments on an earlier presentation of this paper, I thank an audience at University of Düsseldorf. I also thank Ludwig Fahrbach, David Atkinson, Jeanne Peijnenburg, Ionannis Votsis, and an anonymous referee for Philosophia, for helpful comments on earlier drafts of this paper.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Heinrich Heine Universitaet DuesseldorfDuesseldorfGermany

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