Author: Yuval Avnur

The two main components of Coliva’s view are Moderatism and Extended Rationality. According to Moderatism, a belief about specific material objects is perceptually justified iff, absent defeaters, one has the appropriate course of experience and it is assumed that there is an external world. I grant Moderatism and instead focus on Extended Rationality, according to which it is epistemically rational to believe evidentially warranted propositions and to accept those unwarrantable assumptions that make the acquisition of perceptual warrants possible and are therefore constitutive of ordinary evidential warrants. I suggest that, even though Extended Rationality might be true, it cannot do the work that Coliva wants it to do. Although my objections do not show that it is false, they can serve to clarify what sorts of problem a theory of justification or rationality could possibly address. This provides an alternative to Coliva’s view of the skeptical problem and the question, on what does rationality hinge?

In: International Journal for the Study of Skepticism
Author: Yuval Avnur

Is there something wrong with the way we form beliefs about our surroundings? Most people assume not. But there is a character, the skeptic, who disagrees. What, exactly, is this skeptic claiming, and why should this concern us? We are, after all, just humans doing what humans do: forming beliefs on the basis of our faculties. In what sense could this be wrong, and how could it matter if it is? By considering the way in which the notions of vice and criticism can express these questions, we can clarify them and discern some potential answers. These answers, I will suggest, can explain not only why we shouldn’t worry too much, but also the lasting appeal of skeptical problems. The idea is that we can accept, or grant for the sake of argument, that we fall short of some important standard while insisting that it is entirely unreasonable to criticize people, or ourselves, on that basis.

In: International Journal for the Study of Skepticism