No hope for the Irrelevance Claim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Empirical findings about intuitions putatively cast doubt on the traditional methodology of philosophy. Herman Cappelen and Max Deutsch have argued that these methodological concerns are unmotivated as experimental findings about intuitions are irrelevant for assessments of the methodology of philosophy—I dub this the ‘Irrelevance Claim’. In this paper, I first explain that for Cappelen and Deutsch to vindicate the Irrelevance Claim from a forceful objection, their arguments have to establish that intuitions play no epistemically significant role whatsoever in philosophy—call this the ‘Orthogonality Claim’. I then argue that even under a charitable reading of their views Cappelen and Deutsch fail to establish the Orthogonality Claim. Lastly, I discuss empirical evidence that the Orthogonality Claim is false. The arguments in this paper will demonstrate that Cappelen and Deutsch cannot motivate the Irrelevance Claim and that their replies to recent experimental attacks on traditional methodology of philosophy do not succeed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3351-3371
Number of pages21
JournalPHILOSOPHICAL STUDIES
Volume177
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2020

Keywords

  • Evidence
  • Experimental philosophy
  • INTUITIONS
  • Intuition
  • KNOWLEDGE
  • Philosophical methodology

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