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dc.contributor.advisorMcGrath, Mattheweng
dc.contributor.authorLee, Kok Yongeng
dc.date.issued2014eng
dc.date.submitted2014 Springeng
dc.description"May 2014."eng
dc.descriptionDissertation Supervisor: Dr. Matthew McGrath.eng
dc.descriptionIncludes vita.eng
dc.description.abstractIn this dissertation, I aim at resolving the skeptical puzzle. An instance of this puzzle is as follows: (1) I know that I have hands. (2) I don't know that I am not a brain in a vat (being stimulated to experience having hands). (3) If I know that I have hands, I know that I am not a brain in a vat. (1)-(3) are puzzling since, while each is individually plausible, they are jointly inconsistent. Siding with epistemic contextualism, I argue that the truth values of (1)-(3) vary with contexts. More precisely, (1), not-(2) and (3) are true in the ordinary context, while not-(1), (2), and (3) are true in the skeptical context. However, contextualists claim that the variability of the truth values consists in the variability of the standards for knowledge, while I claim that the variability is due to the variability of one's epistemic position with respect to p. I argue against the contextualist solution. I propose that one's epistemic position with respect to p should be characterized by the sensitivity of one's reason, where S's reason for p is sensitive just in case S would not have the same reason if p had not been the case. I argue that the assessment of the sensitivity of one's reason for p is relative to the epistemic inquiry the assessor is engaging in. There are two basic kinds of epistemic inquiry, defining by two distinct epistemic goals: the liberal goal and the conservative goal. I argue that (1) and not-(2) are true relative to the liberal inquiry, while not-(1) and (2) are true relative to the conservative inquiry. This explains why (1) and not-(2) are true in the ordinary context, while not-(1) and (2), the skeptical one.eng
dc.description.bibrefIncludes bibliographical references (pages 287-294).eng
dc.format.extent1 online resource (3 files) : illustrations.eng
dc.identifier.merlinb107802892eng
dc.identifier.oclc905914157eng
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/10355/44182
dc.identifier.urihttps://doi.org/10.32469/10355/44182eng
dc.languageEnglisheng
dc.publisher[University of Missouri--Columbia]eng
dc.relation.ispartofcommunityUniversity of Missouri--Columbia. Graduate School. Theses and Dissertationseng
dc.rightsOpenAccesseng
dc.rights.licenseThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 License.
dc.sourceSubmitted by the University of Missouri--Columbia Graduate Schooleng
dc.subjectAuthor supplied: theories of knowledge; sensitivity; skepticism; contextualism; causal model; counterfactual conditionaleng
dc.titleA solution to skeptical puzzleseng
dc.typeThesiseng
thesis.degree.disciplinePhilosophy (MU)eng
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Missouri--Columbiaeng
thesis.degree.levelDoctoraleng
thesis.degree.namePh. D.eng


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