A Solution to the knowability paradox and the paradox of idealization in modal epistemic languages /

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2014
Akçelik, Oğuz
Human beings are endowed with finite cognitive capacities so that there are forever unknown truths. This fact is stated by non-omniscience thesis (NO). On the other hand many philosophers, especially semantic antirealists, hold that all truths (even the unknown ones) are knowable, and this is stated by the knowability principle (KP). The so-called Knowability Paradox consists in the derivation of a contradiction from the conjunction of (NO) and (KP). We shall show that the derivation of such a contradiction can be blocked by interpreting (NO) as the thesis that there are truths forever unknown to actual agents. We further provide a solution to the so-called Paradox of Idealization which consists in the derivation of a contradiction from the following, initially plausible, premises. First, thesis (FU) stating that there are feasibly unknowable truths in the sense of truths knowable only by idealized agents, second, thesis (NI) stating that there are no idealized agents, and third, above mentioned thesis (KP). We show that by interpreting (NI) as stating that no actual agent is idealized, the derivation of contradiction from the conjunction of (FU), (NI), and (KP) is blocked.
Citation Formats
O. Akçelik, “A Solution to the knowability paradox and the paradox of idealization in modal epistemic languages /,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2014.