Committee ChairHorgan, Terry
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIn my dissertation I develop an account of perceptual knowledge through thinking about epistemic luck, epistemic agency, and skepticism. Two conditions are, as I claim, necessary and sufficient to render a true belief an instance of perceptual knowledge. These conditions are the luck-precluding condition and evidence-based justification. The luck-precluding conditions are external conditions, consisting in physical regularities in the world that allow us to arrive through our evidence at the truth in a systematic way. I claim that these luck-precluding conditions also allow us to avoid Gettier cases. Evidence-based justification requires evidence as an internal condition. However, there are some external constraints as to when our evidence can reasonably be expected to lead to the kind of justification required for perceptual knowledge. This account of perceptual knowledge blends together internal and external requirements. The claim is that only given this match of internal and external requirements can we argue that the resulting set of necessary conditions is also sufficient for perceptual knowledge in that it allows us to avoid all problematic forms of epistemic luck.