The self-knowledge gambit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

If we hold that perceiving is sufficient for knowing, we can raise a powerful objection to dreaming skepticism: Skeptics assume the implausible KK-principle, because they hold that if we don’t know whether we are dreaming or perceiving p, we don’t know whether p. The rejection of the KK-principle thus suggests an anti-skeptical strategy: We can sacrifice some of our self-knowledge—our second-order knowledge—and thereby save our knowledge of the external world. I call this strategy the Self-Knowledge Gambit. I argue that the Self-Knowledge Gambit is not satisfactory, because the dreaming skeptic can avail herself of a normative counterpart to the KK-principle: When we lack second-order knowledge, we should suspend our first-order beliefs and thereby give up any first-order knowledge we might have had. The skeptical challenge is essentially a normative challenge, and one can raise it even if one rejects the KK-Principle.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1977–1999
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2011


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