Does Contextualism Hinge on a Methodological Dispute?

Authored by: Jie Gao , Mikkel Gerken , Stephen B. Ryan

The Routledge Handbook of Epistemic Contextualism

Print publication date:  March  2017
Online publication date:  March  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138818392
eBook ISBN: 9781315745275
Adobe ISBN: 9781317594697

10.4324/9781315745275.ch6

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Abstract

Epistemic contextualism (henceforth: contextualism) is, roughly, the semantic thesis that the truth-conditional contribution of “knows” varies with variations in the context of utterance. Contextualism has been surrounded by methodological disputes as long as it has existed. In fact, a large number of the debates that characterize contemporary meta-epistemology resemble the methodological disputes over contextualism. We think that this is no mere accident. Rather, the nature of and motivation for contextualism naturally raise methodological questions. What is the proper relationship between epistemology and philosophy of language? What is the role of intuitive judgments in epistemological theorizing? What is the proper response when our epistemological theories are incongruous with our folk epistemology?

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