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Title: Knowledge from a social perspective
Author: De Brasi, Leandro
Awarding Body: King's College London (University of London)
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2012
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The main thesis of this work is that to know is to grasp the truth by means of certain truth-conducive procedures which are socially-designed for the pooling of information and which we acquire through enculturation. The category of knowledge is the product of our social nature and its constitutive norms are regulative rules of our pervasive testimonial practice which are responsibly developed through time by the epistemic community for the promotion of truth. The account of knowledge derived from these inherently social norms is reliabilist, responsibilist and social. The particular combination of reliabilism and responsibilism fostered by the socio-historical nature of the norms resolves various standard issues within the theory of knowledge. The account also provides an epistemology that is truly social. -- After the first preliminary chapter sets up the project to be undertaken and method to be employed, the second chapter introduces a practical explication of the concept of knowledge which rests on the testimonial practice and from which a plausible hypothesis about the nature of knowledge is derived. Given this explication and hypothesis, we consider the nature of this practice in some detail. The next three chapters explore some refinements and consequences of the account promoted by those considerations. The third chapter notes that a fallibilist approach to knowledge that allows us to halt both infallibilism-based and closure-based scepticisms is motivated, as well as a classical invariantist approach. The fourth chapter exploits the aforesaid responsibilism to handle some worries associated with reliabilism. It also considers more general issues, such as the Gettier and value problems. The final chapter closes by adverting to the kind of wide-ranging social epistemology offered.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available