Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Is knowledge a natural concept?

Consider the following argument:

  1. The best accounts of "x knows p" are conjunctive, i.e., of the form R1(x,p) & R2(x,p) & ... (with at least two conjuncts).
  2. Therefore, probably, knowledge is a conjunctive concept. (See this post and this one)
  3. No conjunctive concept is natural.
  4. Therefore, knowledge is not a natural concept.
Alternately, one could claim that knowledge is a natural concept, and hence the best accounts of "x knows p" are false.

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