Knowledge and Its Limits

Knowledge and Its Limits

by Timothy Williamson
     
 
Knowledge and its Limits presents a systematic new conception of knowledge as a fundamental kind of mental state sensitive to the knower's environment. It makes a major contribution to the debate between externalist and internalist philosophies of mind, and breaks radically with the epistemological tradition of analysing knowledge in terms of true belief. The theory

Overview

Knowledge and its Limits presents a systematic new conception of knowledge as a fundamental kind of mental state sensitive to the knower's environment. It makes a major contribution to the debate between externalist and internalist philosophies of mind, and breaks radically with the epistemological tradition of analysing knowledge in terms of true belief. The theory casts light on a wide variety of philosophical issues: the problem of scepticism, the nature of evidence, probability and assertion, the dispute between realism and anti-realism, and the paradox of the surprise examination. Williamson relates the new conception to structural limits on knowledge that imply that what can be known never exhausts what is true. The arguments are illustrated by rigorous models based on epistemic logic and probability theory. The result is a new way of doing epistemology for the twenty-first century.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The best book in epistemology to come out since 1975"—Keith DeRose, British Journal for the Philosophy of Science

"Newness in philosophy is rare. But this important book offers a boldly original view of the nature of knowledge.... A daring new picture of knowledge is skillfully supported with an argumentative verve that its author, the new professor of logic at Oxford University, has made himself known for.... Throughout, Mr Williamson is bold, ingenious and original; the tradition he opposes appears by contrast stale, scholastic and uninspired.... Anyone with a serious interest in philosophy will have much to learn from this challenging book."—The Economist

"Radical and challenging...without question and important exercise of the 'let me show you a new way of looking at things' kind; something we sorely need in epistemology."—Frank Jackson, Australasian Journal of Philosophy

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780198250432
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
12/01/1900
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.10(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Timothy Williamson is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh.

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