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A Luxury of the UnderstandingOn the Value of True Belief$
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Allan Hazlett

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199674800

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199674800.001.0001

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Darwinian Approaches

Darwinian Approaches

Chapter:
(p.180) 7 Darwinian Approaches
Source:
A Luxury of the Understanding
Author(s):

Hazlett Allan

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199674800.003.0007

“Darwinian” approaches to epistemic normativity, which is explain epistemic normativity in terms of the biological function of belief, are articulated and criticized. A “biological” conception of belief, on which the biological function of belief is to be true, is considered. It is argued that Darwinian approaches depend on the problematic assumption that biological functioning is valuable, and that the plausibility of these approaches depends on empirical knowledge about the natural history of human cognition that we presently do not possess. The possibility of non-epistemic biological functions of belief is considered.

Keywords:   Biological function, epistemic value, biological conception of belief, social cognition

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