The Knowability Paradox
By (author) Jonathan L. Kvanvig
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Knowability Paradox by Jonathan L. Kvanvig
Book DescriptionThe paradox of knowability, derived from a proof by Frederic Fitch in 1963, is one of the deepest paradoxes concerning the nature of truth. Jonathan Kvanvig argues that the depth of the paradox has not been adequately appreciated. It has long been known that the paradox threatens antirealist conceptions of truth according to which truth is epistemic. If truth is epistemic, what better way to express that idea than to maintain that all truths are knowable? In the face of the paradox, however, such a characterization threatens to undermine antirealism. If Fitch's proof is valid, then one can be an antirealist of this sort only by endorsing the conclusion of the proof that all truths are known. Realists about truth have tended to stand on the sidelines and cheer the difficulties faced by their opponents from Fitch's proof. Kvanvig argues that this perspective is wholly unwarranted. He argues that there are two problems raised by the paradox, one that threatens antirealism about truth and the other that threatens everybody's view about truth, realist or antirealist. The problem facing antirealism has had a number of proposed solutions over the past 40 years, and the results have not been especially promising with regard to the first problem. The second problem has not even been acknowledged, however, and the proposals regarding the first problem are irrelevant to the second problem. This book thus provides a thorough investigation of the literature on the paradox, and also proposes a solution to the deeper of the two problems raised by Fitch's proof. It provides a complete picture of the paradoxicality that results from Fitch's proof, and presents a solution to the paradox that claims to address both problems raised by the original proof.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780199282593
(225mm x 145mm x 19mm)
Imprint: Clarendon Press
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publish Date: 9-Feb-2006
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Jonathan L. Kvanvig
Rationality and Reflection, Paperback (January 2017)
Jonathan L. Kvanvig presents a new account of rationality, Perspectivalism, which both avoids elevating rationality so that only the most reflective of us are capable of rational beliefs, and avoids reducing it to the level of beasts. He defends optionality about what it is reasonable to think, and provides a framework for rational disagreement.
Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion, Paperback (February 2016)
Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion is an annual volume offering a regular snapshot of state-of-the-art work in this longstanding area of philosophy that has seen an explosive growth of interest over the past half century.
Destiny and Deliberation, Paperback (October 2013)
Jonathan Kvanvig presents and defends a new theistic outlook-'Philosophical Arminianism'-which reconciles a traditional, high conception of deity with a conception of human beings as free and morally responsible. He offers a bold new account of eschatological matters (the doctrines of heaven and hell), and divine deliberation and creation.
Knowability Paradox, Paperback (October 2008)» View all books by Jonathan L. Kvanvig
The paradox of knowability poses difficulties to our understanding of truth. It claims that if we assume a truth is knowable, we can demonstrate that it is known. Kvanvig unearths the ways in which the paradox is threatening, and sets out an approach to the paradox that solves both problems raised by the paradox for our understanding of truth.
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