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Paper   IPM / Philosophy / 13446
School of Analytic Philosophy
  Title:   Varieties of Pragmatic Encroachment
  Author(s):  Hamid Vahid
  Status:   Published
  Journal: Acta Analytica
  Vol.:  29
  Year:  2014
  Pages:   25-41
  Supported by:  IPM
According to a recent view, known as the 'pragmatic encroachment' thesis, an agent�??s non-truth-related factors are relevant to the epistemic status of her beliefs. In particular, in addition to truth-related factors, practical factors are said to be relevant to the question whether or not true belief amounts to knowledge. Despite the intuitive appeal of the thesis, however, it is puzzling how practical factors can impact the truth-related factors that ground the epistemic status of one's beliefs. In this paper, I will distinguish between a strong and a weak sense of the way in which practical factors are said to be thus relevant. Their differences are explicated in terms of the nature and the extent to which practical factors are said to impact the epistemic status of one's beliefs. I begin by considering a strong version of the thesis that suggests principles according to which the practical rationality of one's actions is a necessary condition on knowledge and justification. Having noted an inadequacy in the formulation of such principles, the arguments in their support are subsequently stated and criticized. Finally, I identify two modest versions of the thesis of pragmatic encroachment and argue that they, too, fail to explain how practical factors can bear on the epistemic status of one's beliefs.

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