Self-Blindness and Self-Knowledge

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Self-Blindness and Self-Knowledge. / Parrott, Matthew Thomas.

In: Philosophers' Imprint, Vol. 17, No. 16, 31.08.2017, p. 1-22.

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@article{b449c4ff2f9248f9ba96774f509737a1,
title = "Self-Blindness and Self-Knowledge",
abstract = "Many philosophers hold constitutive theories of self-knowledge in the sense that they think either that a person{\textquoteright}s psychological states depend upon her having true beliefs about them, or that a person{\textquoteright}s believing that she is in a particular psychological state depends upon her actually being in that state. One way to support this type of view can be found in Shoemaker{\textquoteright}s well-known argument that an absurd condition, which he calls “self-blindness”, would be possible if a subject{\textquoteright}s psychological states and her higher-order beliefs about them were wholly distinct existences. A second reason to endorse a constitutive theory is the widespread conviction that first-person access is epistemically special. In this essay, I shall argue that even if self-blindness is impossible, the best explanation for this does not deny that a person{\textquoteright}s psychological states are wholly distinct from her beliefs about them. I shall then attempt to account for the epistemic distinctiveness of first-person access on the basis of fundamental features of rational cognition. One advantage of this account over constitutive theories of self-knowledge is that it is better placed to explain our fallibility and ignorance.",
author = "Parrott, {Matthew Thomas}",
year = "2017",
month = aug,
day = "31",
language = "English",
volume = "17",
pages = "1--22",
journal = "Philosophers' Imprint",
issn = "1533-628X",
publisher = "University of Michigan Press",
number = "16",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Self-Blindness and Self-Knowledge

AU - Parrott, Matthew Thomas

PY - 2017/8/31

Y1 - 2017/8/31

N2 - Many philosophers hold constitutive theories of self-knowledge in the sense that they think either that a person’s psychological states depend upon her having true beliefs about them, or that a person’s believing that she is in a particular psychological state depends upon her actually being in that state. One way to support this type of view can be found in Shoemaker’s well-known argument that an absurd condition, which he calls “self-blindness”, would be possible if a subject’s psychological states and her higher-order beliefs about them were wholly distinct existences. A second reason to endorse a constitutive theory is the widespread conviction that first-person access is epistemically special. In this essay, I shall argue that even if self-blindness is impossible, the best explanation for this does not deny that a person’s psychological states are wholly distinct from her beliefs about them. I shall then attempt to account for the epistemic distinctiveness of first-person access on the basis of fundamental features of rational cognition. One advantage of this account over constitutive theories of self-knowledge is that it is better placed to explain our fallibility and ignorance.

AB - Many philosophers hold constitutive theories of self-knowledge in the sense that they think either that a person’s psychological states depend upon her having true beliefs about them, or that a person’s believing that she is in a particular psychological state depends upon her actually being in that state. One way to support this type of view can be found in Shoemaker’s well-known argument that an absurd condition, which he calls “self-blindness”, would be possible if a subject’s psychological states and her higher-order beliefs about them were wholly distinct existences. A second reason to endorse a constitutive theory is the widespread conviction that first-person access is epistemically special. In this essay, I shall argue that even if self-blindness is impossible, the best explanation for this does not deny that a person’s psychological states are wholly distinct from her beliefs about them. I shall then attempt to account for the epistemic distinctiveness of first-person access on the basis of fundamental features of rational cognition. One advantage of this account over constitutive theories of self-knowledge is that it is better placed to explain our fallibility and ignorance.

M3 - Article

VL - 17

SP - 1

EP - 22

JO - Philosophers' Imprint

JF - Philosophers' Imprint

SN - 1533-628X

IS - 16

ER -