Daniel Korman

Evolutionary debunking arguments abound, but it is widely assumed that they do not arise for our perceptual beliefs about midsized objects, insofar as the adaptive value of our object beliefs cannot be explained without reference to the objects themselves. I argue that this is a mistake. Just as with moral beliefs, the adaptive value of our object beliefs can be explained without assuming that the beliefs are accurate. I then explore the prospects for other sorts of vindications of our object beliefs—which involve “bootstrapping” from our experiences as of midsized objects—and I defend bootstrapping maneuvers against a variety of objections. Finally, I argue for an explanatory constraint on legitimate bootstrapping and show how some attempts to respond to debunking arguments (e.g., Hofweber 2016) run afoul of the constraint.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016
Debunking Arguments in Metaethics and Metaphysics
114 Cocke Hall (The Gibson Room)
Institutional Affiliation: 
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Semester Offered: