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Ideas of Bernecker / Dretske, by Text

[American, fl. 2000, Professors in California.]

2000 Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist
Pt.II Int p.69 Justification can be of the belief, or of the person holding the belief
     Full Idea: There is a distinction between a person being justified in holding a belief, and the belief itself being justified.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.II Int)
     A reaction: This is the crucial and elementary distinction which even the most sophisticated of epistemologists keep losing sight of. Epistemology is about persons. All true beliefs are justified - by the facts!
Pt.III Int p.231 Foundationalism aims to avoid an infinite regress
     Full Idea: The driving force behind foundationalism has always been the threat of an infinite regress.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.III Int)
     A reaction: You could just live with the regress (Peter Klein), or say that the regress fades away, or that it is cut off by social epistemological convention, or the regress circles round and rejoins.
Pt.III Int p.232 Infallible sensations can't be foundations if they are non-epistemic
     Full Idea: If sense experiences are non-epistemic they may be infallible, but they are unsuitable for providing the foundations for other beliefs.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.III Int)
     A reaction: If we experience flashing lights in the retina, or an afterimage, we don't think we are seeing objects, so why is normal perception different? Ans: because it is supported by judgement.
Pt.III Int p.232 Justification is normative, so it can't be reduced to cognitive psychology
     Full Idea: The concept of justification is absolutely central to epistemology; but this concept is normative (i.e. it lays down norms), so epistemology can't be reduced to factual cognitive psychology.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.III Int)
     A reaction: A simple rejection of the 'epistemology naturalised' idea. Best to start with slugs rather than people. You can confuse a slug, so it has truth or falsehood, but what is slug normativity? This is an interesting discussion point, not an argument.
Pt.IV Int p.302 Modern arguments against the sceptic are epistemological and semantic externalism, and the focus on relevance
     Full Idea: In modern epistemology the three strategies to rebut the sceptic are 1) epistemological externalism, 2) the 'relevant alternative account of knowledge' (that scepticism is too extreme to be relevant), and 3) semantic externalism.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.IV Int)
Pt.V Int p.431 Perception, introspection, testimony, memory, reason, and inference can give us knowledge
     Full Idea: The basic sources of knowledge and justification are perception, introspection, testimony, memory, reason, and inference.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.V Int)
Pt.V Int p.433 Causal theory says true perceptions must be caused by the object perceived
     Full Idea: The causal theory of perceptions says that to perceive an object is to have a sense-datum caused by that object; it is not enough for the world to be the way we perceive it; the world must cause the perception.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.V Int)
     A reaction: All causal theories seem dubious to me; what causes something is not the same was what it means, or refers to, or what justifies it. The hallmark of successful perception is truth. I would perceive a tree if God planted the perception in me.
Pt.V Int p.434 You can acquire new knowledge by exploring memories
     Full Idea: You can first come to know by remembering, as in learning how many windows there were in your childhood home by imagining a tour.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.V Int)
Pt.V Int p.434 Semantic externalism ties content to the world, reducing error
     Full Idea: Semantic externalism ties our mental content down to our actual environment so there is no possibility of massive error.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.V Int)
     A reaction: This sounds more prescriptive than descriptive. People do make massive errors in their concepts. Maybe educated people are more externalist (respectful of experts) than uneducated people?
Pt.V Int p.437 Predictions are bound to be arbitrary if they depend on the language used
     Full Idea: The new riddle of induction ('grue') seems to demonstrate that sound inductive inferences are arbitrary because they depend on the actual language people use to formulate predictions.
     From: Bernecker / Dretske (Knowledge:Readings in Cont.Epist [2000], Pt.V Int)