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Epistemic Authority – A Theory of Trust, Authority, and Autonomy in Belief - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Epistemic Authority: A Theory of Trust, Authority, and Autonomy in Belief

Linda Trinkaus Zagzebski


This book gives an extended argument for epistemic authority from the implications of reflective self-consciousness. Epistemic authority is compatible with autonomy, but epistemic self-reliance is incoherent. The book argues that epistemic and emotional self-trust are rational and inescapable, that consistent self-trust commits us to trust in others, and that among those we are committed to trusting are some whom we ought to treat as epistemic authorities, modelled on the well-known principles of authority of Joseph Raz. Some of these authorities can be in the moral and religious domains. The ... More

Keywords: autonomy, authority, social epistemology, trust, belief, emotion, communities, self-reflection

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780199936472
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199936472.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Linda Trinkaus Zagzebski, author
University of Oklahoma