A Puzzle about Normativity

Vol 18, No 3 (2014) • Principia: an international journal of epistemology

Autor: Giovanni Rolla


In this paper, I present a possible solution to the puzzle unveiled by Kornblith (2012) about the sources and the possibility of knowledge of epistemic norms. The puzzle is: if such norms cannot be discovered solely by reflection (“looking inwards”, thinking about first-order thoughts), and if there are correct ways of thinking and inferring, then such norms can only be discovered by investigating the world (“looking outwards”) —a counterintuitive conclusion. To avoid skepticism about normativity, I argue that we create normative correctness and discover normative demands by investigating the world and reflecting about our epistemic practices. This is done by an exposition of the method known as reflective equilibrium, which is defended against Kornblith’s thesis that the appeal to reflective equilibrium is doomed to failure because it implies reflection.

ISSN: 1414-4217

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/1808-1711.2014v18n3p323

Texto Completo: https://periodicos.ufsc.br/index.php/principia/article/view/1808-1711.2014v18n3p323/29897

Palavras-Chave: Reflection,normativity,paradox,reflective equ

Principia: an international journal of epistemology

"Principia: an international journal of epistemology" was founded in 1997 and regularly publishes articles, discussions and review. The journal aims to publish original scholarly work especially in epistemology area , with an emphasis on material of general interest to academic philosophers. Originally published only in print version (ISSN: 1414-4247), in 2005 the journal began to be published also in online version (ISSN: 1808-1711). Since 1999 are published three issues per year: in April, August and December. Qualis CAPES: A2