Philosophy Department Seminar - How both you, and the brain in a vat, can know whether or not you are envatted? with Ofra Magidor (University of Oxford)

23 November 2017, 2.00 PM - 23 November 2017, 3.30 PM

Cotham House G2

Abstract: Externalist solutions to the sceptical challenge typically posit a crucial asymmetry between actual-world agent and their BIV counterparts: while you are in a position to know that you are not envatted the BIV is not in a position to know that she is envatted. I argue that this asymmetry should be rejected: the same considerations that lead the externalist to attribute to actual-world agents the ability to know whether they are envatted, should lead them to attribute the same kind of knowledge to their BIV counterparts. I discuss to what extent this conclusion survives under a range of background assumptions and what consequences it might have for other epistemological debates.

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