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Cognition Through UnderstandingSelf-Knowledge, Interlocution, Reasoning, Reflection: Philosophical Essays, Volume 3$
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Tyler Burge

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199672028

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672028.001.0001

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Self and Self-Understanding

Self and Self-Understanding

Lecture III: Self-Understanding

(p.187) 9 Self and Self-Understanding
Cognition Through Understanding

Tyler Burge

Oxford University Press

‘Self‐Understanding’ (2007, 2011) explains how immunity to brute error in self‐knowledge is constitutive to applicability of norms of critical reason and morality. The essay argues that if all an individual’s self‐understanding could be warranted but mistaken, the self‐understanding would be too detached to ground accountability to norms of critical reason and morality. Immunity to brute error resides in use of capacities whose structures and natures are constitutive to a point of view. The relevant capacities are mostly preservational. Immunity to brute error in deductive inference; in accepting simple, self‐evident truths; and in non‐inferential beliefs about reason support are considered as comparison cases. The essay offers a general account of how the role of self‐knowledge in critical reasoning bears on warrant for the relevant self‐knowledge. The account extends beyond knowledge of occurrent thoughts to knowledge of standing attitudes, to meta‐representational episodic memory, to knowledge of anticipations of actions, and to knowledge of sensations.

Keywords:   self-knowledge, brute error, norms of reason, critical reason, norms of morality, self-understanding, moral responsibility, purely preservative memory, deductive inference, self-evidence, warrant, entitlement, episodic memory, knowledge of sensations

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