Why are we so polarized, and how can we move forward? A perspective from social epistemology.

Posted on 7 September 2020 by John Greco

Contemporary academic philosophy has recently taken a “social turn” regarding the way it thinks about knowledge and related issues.  Put differently, philosophy has turned away from the traditional ideal of a self-sufficient inquirer, doing his or her best to figure out what is reasonable to believe, in favor of a conception of knowledge that emphasizes
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Socializing Intellectual Autonomy

Posted on 10 August 2020 by Chris Ranalli

Two key ideas which frame our thinking about autonomy are self-governance and self-reliance. The problem with using these arguably modern ideas to frame our thinking about autonomy is that it can easily make it look like autonomy and community are in tension; that securing one’s autonomy means withdrawing from one’s community.
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Have we lost the idea of a critical friend?

Posted on 27 July 2020 by Kristján Kristjánsson

I sometimes wonder, in the age of online and offline echochambers and Facebook friendship bubbles, whether we have lost the ancient idea of a critical friend. I am as guilty here as anyone. I mercilessly unfriend people on Facebook whose views I find abhorrent (or even mildly disturbing), rather than engaging with them critically. There
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#YouShouldBelieveHer

Posted on 29 June 2020 by Mona Simion

We believe what other people tell us. I trust that you are on the way to the mall if you tell me you are on the way to the mall; I believe that the price of oil has gone down because I heard it on the news. In the summer I will go hiking in
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The epistemic predicament of the conspiracy theorist

Posted on 15 June 2020 by Tommaso Piazza

A group of international public health scientists has recently published a statement in the prestigious medical journal The Lancet about the origins of the Sars-CoV-2 virus, the pathogen responsible for the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. In their statement, they report that on the basis of the publication and analysis of its genomes, scientists from
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Ethicists, hold your horses (Part 1)

Posted on 18 May 2020 by Fleur Jongepier

    Fleur Jongepier                         Karin Jongsma If intensive care beds or ventilators run out, who should be saved? And how should such decisions be morally justified? These are horrible, indeed impossible, decisions that clinicians currently face, or may be confronted with in the (near)
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Being an Intellectually Dependable Person

Posted on 4 May 2020 by T. Ryan Byerly

We are often at the mercy of others when we are trying to figure things out. The same is true when we are seeking to gain deeper understanding or to improve our skills for gaining knowledge.  Others can share their perspectives with us. They can point us toward relevant evidence. They can raise important questions
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Following the science: trust, experts, and COVID-19

Posted on 20 April 2020 by Matt Bennett

Students of recent social epistemology could be forgiven for thinking that the world’s social and political problems begin and end with the threat of “fake news”. The thought is that something new and dangerous has emerged at the end of the end of history: a “post-truth” new world order in which populist demagogues deny the
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Skepticism, Tribalism, and Humble Persistence

Posted on 6 April 2020 by Jason Baehr

With many weighty contemporary issues, it is increasingly difficult to know what exactly to believe. This includes issues related to or at the intersection of politics, morality, religion, medicine, and science. Information about these issues is endless. It points in different and inconsistent directions. And its quality can be extremely difficult to discern.
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Which crisis of trust?

Posted on 24 February 2020 by Matt Bennett

The UK Labour Party’s leadership contest is well underway after heavy defeat in the 2019 General Election. There is nothing close to consensus within the Party about why things went wrong, and still very little agreement on the most high-profile political issues. Members could be forgiven, then, for taking solace in one area of apparent
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Political Debate in the Digital Age

Posted on 10 February 2020 by Fabienne Peter

In an ideal democratic world, all citizens are invited to debate political necessities and possibilities to the best of their knowledge and to forge their country’s future in this way. In an ideal democratic world, political debate is, in other words, both inclusive and evidence-led. In a dystopian world, by contrast, political debate is exclusive
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Depending on others for knowledge

Posted on 13 January 2020 by Emily Sullivan

We depend on others. We depend on others when we are sick or when we need help moving into a new house. We also depend on others for knowledge. We learn from books written by other people. Children learn from teachers in school. If we are lost in a city, we depend on others to
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