It is possible that one is currently radically deceived—that one is a BIV, say—and that one has no inkling of this because one cannot distinguish between being a BIV and having normal unenvatted experiences. One would thus occupy, entirely unbeknownst to one,what we might refer to as the epistemic shadowlands, where one’s experiences seem like normal veridical experiences of the world around one, but are in fact highly deceptive. What is the rational standing of one’s beliefs in the shadowlands? According to the new evil demon intuition,the rational standing ought to be on a par with—and certainly no worse than—the rational standing of the beliefs of one’s unenvatted counterpart. This intuition is in direct conflict with epistemological disjunctivism since this view holds that the rational support that one’s beliefs enjoy,in the best case, can be factive reasons which entail the truth of the (empirical) belief in question. This is clearly not a kind of rational support which is going to be available to one’s envatted counterpart. This paper explores the relationship between epistemological disjunctivism and the new evil demon intuition and argues for a principled way of accounting for why the rational standing of one’s envatted counterpart’s beliefs is impoverished in comparison to the rational standing of one’s own beliefs. Along the way, we also explore how epistemological disjunctivism is related to the more general—and, I argue, completely distinct—project of offering a theory of knowledge.
|Title of host publication||The New Evil Demon|
|Subtitle of host publication||New Essays on Knowledge, Justification and Rationality|
|Publisher||Oxford University Press|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 18 Sep 2018|