Contextualism's Third Way: Between Transcendental Truths and Contextual Factors
6 Pages Posted: 24 Dec 2014
Date Written: December 23, 2014
It is asserted that the lack of any satisfying response to skepticism stems from the common grounds between epistemic theories and skepticism. One controversial candidate for being a notorious example of such grounds is “Epistemological Realism”- the idea that there exists (or should exist) invariant epistemic truths. While the majority of epistemologists, even some contextualists, claim that for avoiding relativism and skepticism we are obliged to approve of “Epistemological Realism”, a few number of critics state that believing in “Epistemological Realism” drives us to absolutionist dogmatism with a foundationalist model of knowledge. In this paper, it is argued that both parties are slightly wrong. We may eschew both of them by adopting a third alternative which says although all the contexts should have criterial facts for assessing judgements, there is no unique transcendental truth shared amongst all of them. To put it differently, even though an avowal like “any context has criterial facts” is a transcendental proposition per se, it is obtained through evaluating the structure of knowledge in various contexts.
Keywords: Epistemological Realism, Relativism, Absolute dogmatism, Foundationalism, Transcendental Truth, Contextualism
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