Date of Award

Spring 5-17-2020

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Department

Philosophy

First Advisor

Susan Feldman

Language

English

Abstract

The goal of this paper is to defend my version of a coherence theory of justification by way of showing defects and suggesting refinements to Laurence BonJour’s and Keith Lehrer’s coherence theories. First, I consider BonJour’s and Lehrer’s theories. Second, I defend BonJour’s and Lehrer’s theories against the “consistent fairy story” objection raised in Susan Haack’s Evidence and Inquiry: A Pragmatist Reconstruction of Epistemology and Ernest Sosa’s “The Raft and the Pyramid: Coherence Versus Foundations in the Theory of Knowledge.” Third, I consider some issues with BonJour’s coherence conditions and some ways that they diverge from a “tracking virtue” theory of epistemic responsibility. Fourth, I consider some issues with Lehrer’s coherence conditions and some ways that they diverge from a “tracking virtue” theory of epistemic responsibility. Fifth, I develop two formulations of an idealized system condition that can avoid the issues, and divergence, that I identify with BonJour’s and Lehrer’s theories.

Included in

Epistemology Commons

COinS