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Self-Knowledge for Humans$
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Quassim Cassam

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199657575

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199657575.001.0001

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Looking Outwards

Looking Outwards

Chapter:
(p.100) 9 Looking Outwards
Source:
Self-Knowledge for Humans
Author(s):

Quassim Cassam

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199657575.003.0009

Rationalists like Moran take it that use of the Transparency Method (TM) is a basic source of intentional self-knowledge. Three problems for simple Rationalism are identified: the Generality Problem, the Substitution Problem, and the Matching Problem. The Matching Problem suggests that TM can’t deliver immediate self-knowledge, as claimed by Moran. Gendler’s distinction between belief and alief doesn’t help. An alternative to simple Rationalism is Activism, according to which we can know our minds by actively shaping their contents. Activism runs into versions of the three problems for simple Rationalism and has difficulties accounting for self-knowledge of attitudes that are not formed by active deliberation. In addition, the epistemology of active self-knowledge remains obscure. On a dispositional account of belief Activism fails to secure what Rationalists regard as the immediacy of self-knowledge.

Keywords:   Simple Rationalism, Richard Moran, Transparency Method, Generality Problem, Substitution Problem, Matching Problem, Tamar Gendler, alief, Activism, dispositional account of belief

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