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Transparent MindsA Study of Self-Knowledge$
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Jordi Fernández

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199664023

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199664023.001.0001

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Self-Deception and Self-Knowledge

Self-Deception and Self-Knowledge

(p.181) 6 Self-Deception and Self-Knowledge
Transparent Minds

Jordi Fernández

Oxford University Press

This chapter offers an account of a certain variety of self-deception. The account rests on the ‘bypass’ view according to which one forms the thought that one believes something on the basis of one's grounds for that belief. If this view is correct, then our thoughts about which beliefs we have should be in accordance with our grounds for those beliefs. The proposal is that the relevant variety of self-deception is a failure of self-knowledge wherein the subject violates this epistemic obligation, which explains two aspects of it: A tension between the subject's speech and her actions, and our inclination to hold the subject responsible for her condition. Two other approaches to self-deception in the literature are discussed, intentionalism and motivationalism. Intentionalism explains the two aspects of self-deception but it runs into the so-called ‘paradoxes’ of self-deception. Motivationalism avoids those paradoxes but it cannot explain the two aspects of self-deception.

Keywords:   self-knowledge, self-deception, bypass, motivationalism, intentionalism, paradoxes, responsibility, epistemic obligation

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