Argument: “Fallibilism” So far in this class we have been working on the assumption that fallibilism is right. This assumption helps us avoid the conclusion that we should suspend judgment about prett

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Argument:

“Fallibilism”

So far in this class we have been working on the assumption that fallibilism is right. This assumption helps us avoid the conclusion that we should suspend judgment about pretty much everything. But there are some big problems with fallibilism. Here is one: the fallibilist says that one should believe propositions even in cases where one doesn’t know if the propositions are true (because one is not completely certain). This means that the fallibilist should be ok with saying “P is true and I don’t know that P is true.” That is never ok: this is an irrational attitude to have toward a proposition. This means that fallibilism is wrong about rationality.

Write a paper on one of the arguments below. Make sure the paper reconstructs the argument and only the argument (no unnecessary or idle premises). Then object to the argument. Your paper should:

  1. Begin with a brief summary of the argument.
  2. Reconstruct the argument into standard form: make sure your reconstruction is valid.
  3. For each line in your argument, note whether it is a premise or a subconclusion. If it is a subconclusion, indicate which premises it follows from.
  4. Give a brief defense of each premise. You should aim for your defense for each premise to be a paragraph of text in length.
  5. Deny a premise: briefly state which premise you deny and explain why you think it is false.
  6. Turn your reasoning into a standard form argument. Make sure that the conclusion of the argument is ‘Not (P)’, where (P) is the premise you chose to deny. Make sure your argument is valid.
  7. For each line in your argument, note whether it is a premise or a subconclusion. If it is a subconclusion, indicate which premises it follows from.
  8. Give a brief defense of each premise. You should aim for your defense for each premise to be a paragraph of text in length.
  9. Add a concluding paragraph where you address the following question: does your objection work? Or can the proponent of the original argument find a premise to reject?
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