On the possibility of skeptical scenarios

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4 Scopus citations

Abstract

It is generally accepted that skeptical scenarios must be possible to raise legitimate skeptical doubt. I argue that if the possibility in question is supposed to be genuine metaphysical possibility, the skeptic's reasoning does not straightforwardly succeed. I first motivate the metaphysical possibility requirement on skeptical scenarios: it's a plausible position that several authors accept and that a family of prominent views - sensitivity, safety, relevant alternatives - are committed to. I argue that plausible constraints in modal epistemology show that justification for believing that certain global skeptical scenarios are metaphysically possible rests on some justified beliefs about the external world, and that this undermines the skeptical argument. While there may still be local skeptical challenges, skeptics cannot appeal to the metaphysical possibility of skeptical scenarios to generate global external world skepticism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)387-407
Number of pages21
JournalEuropean Journal of Philosophy
Volume19
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy

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