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Jennifer Lackey, professeur invitée par EHESS-CRAL, avec le concours de l'Institut Nicod

21-28 mars 2018

Jennifer Lackey est Wayne and Elizabeth Jones Professeur de philosophie à l'université Northwestern de Chicago. Ses travaux portent sur l'épistémologie sociale, le témoignage, la connaissance sociale et l'épistémologie générale. Elle est l'auteur de Learning from words(Oxford University Press 2006) et directrice de plusieurs  volumes sur l'épistémologie collective, le témoignage et le désaccord, ainsi que de très nombreux articles. Elle est directrice de la revue Epistemè (Oxford) et editor de Philosophical Studies. Elle est professeur invitée de l'EHESS pour mars 2018 et au CRAL et dans le programme KNOW SOC d’épistémologie sociale.

Dans le cadrede cette invitation Jennifer Lackey donnera des conférences suivantes: 

Mercredi 21 mars 2018 au 105 Bd Raspail salle 7 (13h-15h) : séminaire La connaissance étendue):

Socially Extended Knowledge

A fairly common view in current work in collective epistemology is that groups can have knowledge that not a single one of its members possesses. More precisely, it is argued that a group, G, can know that p even when not a single member of G knows that p. Recently, an even more radical conception of socially extended knowledge has been defended by Alexander Bird, according to which knowledge can be possessed, not only by structured groups with a unified goal—like the crew of a ship—but also by large and unstructured collective entities with diverse aims. He calls this phenomenon “social knowing” or “social knowledge,” paradigmatic instances of which are “North Korea knows how to build an atomic bomb,” or “The growth of scientific knowledge has been exponential since the scientific revolution.” In such cases, a collective entity is said to know that p despite the fact that not a single individual member is even aware that p, thereby showing that social knowledge does not supervene on  the mental states of individuals. In this paper, I argue that knowledge is not socially extended in the very radical sense defended by Bird. My argument is twofold: first, I show that endorsing “social knowing” or “social knowledge” leads to serious epistemological problems and, second, I suggest that the work done by ascribing social knowledge to collective entities can instead be done by describing such entities as being in a position to know.

Mercredi 21 mars 2018 : Institut Jean Nicod, ENS, 45 rue d’Ulm, salle Cavaillès (17h-19h) (séminaire La connaissance ordinaire, P. Egré et F.Kammener)

Group Belief: Lessons from Lies and Bullshit

Groups and other sorts of collective entities are frequently said to believe things. A widespread philosophical view is that belief on the part of a group’s members is neither necessary nor sufficient for group belief. In other words, groups are said to be able to believe that p, even when not a single individual member of the group believes that p. In this paper, I challenge this view by focusing on two phenomena that have been entirely ignored in the literature: group lies and group bullshit. I show that when group belief is understood in terms of actions over which group members have voluntarily control, as is standardly thought, paradigmatic instances of a group lying or bullshitting end up counting as a group believing. I then go on to develop and defend a new view according to which group belief is largely a matter of the individual beliefs of a group’s members, but it is also importantly determined by relations among the bases of these individual beliefs, where these relations arise only at the group level.  

Jeudi 22 mars 2018 au 54 bd Raspail, salle BS1_05 (14-18h) : Atelier témoignane et expertise (programme Know SOC PSL)

Jennifer Lackey: Experts and Peer Disagreement

It is often argued that widespread disagreement among epistemic peers in a domain threatens expertise in that domain. This is taken to lead to a fairly robust form of skepticism: there are no experts in areas rife with peer disagreement, such as religion and politics. In this paper, I sketch two different conceptions of expertise: what I call the expert-as-authority and the expert-as-advisor models. While expertise understood as authoritative renders the problem posed by widespread peer disagreement intractable, I argue that understanding expertise in terms of advice has the resources for a much more satisfying response to this problem.

Robin Mc Kenna (U.Vienne): The Genealogical Method in Epistemology

In 1990 Edward Craig published a book called Knowledge and the State of Nature in which he introduced and defended a genealogical approach to epistemology. In recent years Craig’s book has attracted a lot of attention, and his distinctive approach has been put to a wide range of uses including anti-realist metaepistemology, contextualism, relativism, anti-luck virtue epistemology, epistemic injustice, value of knowledge, pragmatism and virtue epistemology. While the number of objections to Craig’s approach has accumulated, there has been no sustained attempt to develop answers to these objections. In this paper we provide answers to several important objections in the literature.

Giovanni Tuzet (Bocconi, Milan): Testimony and Hearsay

The traditional ban on hearsay in legal factfinding seems to support a reductionist view of testimony: testimony is valuable insofar as it is based on first-hand knowledge, that is, on perception reported as such, with no inference nor assessment by the testifier. However, contemporary legal systems are quite liberal in the admission of hearsay, and this counts as an argument in favor of anti-reductionism.

Vendredi 23 mars 2018 à l'Institut Nicod, 29 rue d’Ulm, salle de séminaire IJN (11h-13h)

What Is Justified Group Belief?

How should we understand a group’s justifiedly believing that p? The topic of group justification has received surprisingly little attention in the literature, with those who have addressed it falling into one of two camps. On the one hand, there are those who favor an inflationary approach, where groups are treated as entities with epistemic “minds of their own.” For these theorists, the justificatory status of group belief involves only actions that take place at the group level, such as the joint acceptance of reasons. On the other hand, there are those who favor adeflationary approach, where group justified belief is understood as nothing more than the aggregation of the justified beliefs of the group’s members. In this paper, I raise new objections to both of these approaches. If I am right, we need to look in an altogether different place for an adequate account of justified group belief. From these objections emerges the skeleton of the positive view that I go on to defend, which I call the group epistemic agent account of group justified belief: groups are epistemic agents in their own right, with justified beliefs that respond to evidence and normative requirements that arise only at the group level, but which are nonetheless importantly constrained by the epistemic status of the beliefs of their individual members.

Mercredi 28 mars 2018 au 105 B Raspail, Salle 7, (13h-15h) : séminaire la connaissance étendue

Jennifer Lackey: More on Group Belief


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