I have suggested that the Infallibility Thesis—that knowledge must be restricted to situations where the possibility of error is necessarily excluded—is incompatible with our customary use of the verb ‘to know’ as an ‘achievement’ or ‘success’ verb. Nevertheless, this thesis has been widely accepted and has had a pervasive influence affecting many areas of philosophical discussion far beyond the topic of knowledge itself. Since I consider that it has done more harm than almost any other philosophical thesis, I think it is necessary to explore some of its ramifications in greater detail: my hope is that the thesis may be eradicated once and for all if the ways in which it has undermined our understanding of the term ‘knowledge’ can be clearly exhibited.
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