forum 10: week of March 19 - second order knowledge

Fragment of a discussion from Course talk:Phil440A
Jump to: navigation, search

I agree that it is appealing to be able to use testimony gain knowledge. However, I think this forces us to ask other questions, such as how do we know that one's source of information is reliable? Can we assume that if they have been a reliable source of information in the past, that we can trust them to be a reliable source in this case as well? Or is it a matter of checking to see that they have evidence to support their testimony? I guess I'm a little sceptical of second-order knowledge, when I think about how confidently one can know something based on testimony, my instinct is that one needs to see the evidence that the other person has, which leads us back to first-order knowledge.

05:44, 23 March 2012