Annalisa ColivaUniversity of California, Irvine, United States,

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The paper explores the idea of a “hinge epistemology,” considered as a theory about justification (and knowledge) which gives center-stage to Wittgenstein’s notion of hinges. First, some basic methodological considerations regarding the relationship between merely exegetical work on Wittgenstein’s texts and more theoretically committed work are put forward. Then, the main problems raised in On Certainty and the most influential interpretative lines it has given rise to so far are presented and discussed. In light of the initial methodological considerations, some contemporary attempts at developing Wittgenstein’s ideas in an anti-skeptical direction, such as Crispin Wright’s and Michael Williams’s, are considered. Their intrinsic merits notwithstanding, it is argued that they fail to take proper measure of Wittgenstein’s own position. In closing, an alternative version of hinge epistemology is put forward and points of contact and disagreement with Wittgenstein’s own views are highlighted.

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