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Dan Korman

It seems to me (and I thereby have immediate prima facie justification for believing) that Pryor's remarks don't yet commit him to a dogmatism about intuitive justification. Here, I take it, is an alternative to dogmatism: the property of beliefs based on intuitions in virtue of which they are justified is the property of being the outcome of a reliable belief-forming method. This is not dogmatism because dogmatism takes the justification-conferring property to be the property to seeming true to the believer. Proceeding via the reliable standard philosophical belief-forming method of believing what seems (intuitively) true results in justified beliefs, not because the beliefs we form seem (intuitively) true, but because standard philosophical method is a reliable belief-forming method.

Is there anything to prevent the dogmatist about perceptual justification from taking this alternative, reliabilist line on intuitive justification? (Or am I wrong to think that this is an alternative to dogmatism?)

John Bengson

Hi Dan,

Good question. I probably should have said something about that alternative in the post. Pryor says (p. 538) that his appeal to standard philosophical methodology is just a piece of "sensible philosophical conservatism": "we start with what it seems intuitively natural to say about perception, and we retain that natural view until we find objections that require us to abandon it." I find this hard to square with the suggestion that Pryor could avoid accepting dogmatism about intuitive justification by adopting a reliabilist line.

In any case, I'm tempted to think that a standard reliabilist line is not a genuine alternative to dogmatism. The reliability of x might explain why, or support the claim that, dogmatism about x is true. (Pryor, on p. 536, explicitly resists this option in the case of dogmatism about perceptual justification.) But it's not obvious that a standard reliabilist line could avoid dogmatism, as I've formulated it. But I'm open to suggestions to the contrary.

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