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WITNESS AGREEMENT AND THE TRUTH-CONDUCIVENESS OF COHERENTIST JUSTIFICATION

Authors


  • William Roche is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Texas Christian University. His primary area of specialization is epistemology. His current research focuses on epistemic justification and related topics in philosophy of science and philosophy of mind. His publications include “Coherentism, Truth, and Witness Agreement” (Acta Analytica, 2010), “A Weaker Condition for Transitivity in Probabilistic Support” (European Journal for Philosophy of Science, 2012), “A Reply to Cling's ‘The Epistemic Regress Problem’ ” (Philosophical Studies, forthcoming), and “Transitivity and Intransitivity in Evidential Support: Some Further Results” (Review of Symbolic Logic, forthcoming).

abstract

Some recent work in formal epistemology shows that “witness agreement” by itself implies neither an increase in the probability of truth nor a high probability of truth—the witnesses need to have some “individual credibility.” It can seem that, from this formal epistemological result, it follows that coherentist justification (i.e., doxastic coherence) is not truth-conducive. I argue that this does not follow. Central to my argument is the thesis that, though coherentists deny that there can be noninferential justification, coherentists do not deny that there can be individual credibility.

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