Epistemic Value Theory and Social Epistemology

Episteme, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 177-188, 2006

18 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2009

Date Written: June 7, 2006

Abstract

In order to guide the decisions of real people who want to bring about good epistemic outcomes for themselves and others, we need to understand our epistemic values. In Knowledge in a Social World, Alvin Goldman has proposed an epistemic value theory that allows us to say whether one outcome is epistemically better than another. However, it has been suggested that Goldman’s theory is not really an epistemic value theory at all because whether one outcome is epistemically better than another partly depends on our non-epistemic interests. In this paper, I argue that an epistemic value theory that serves the purposes of social epistemology must incorporate non-epistemic interests in much the way that Goldman’s theory does. In fact, I argue that Goldman’s theory does not go far enough in this direction. In particular, the epistemic value of having a particular true belief should actually be weighted by how interested we are in the topic.

Keywords: epistemic value theory, epistemology, preference change

Suggested Citation

Fallis, Don, Epistemic Value Theory and Social Epistemology (June 7, 2006). Episteme, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 177-188, 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1508876

Don Fallis (Contact Author)

Northeastern University ( email )

360 Huntington Ave,
Boston, MA 02115
United States

HOME PAGE: http://philpeople.org/profiles/don-fallis

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
99
rank
257,717
Abstract Views
680
PlumX Metrics