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Knowledge, Dexterity, and Attention
A Theory of Epistemic Agency


  • Date Published: January 2019
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107461574

£ 18.99

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About the Authors
  • Contemporary cognitive science clearly tells us that attention is modulated for speech and action. While these forms of goal-directed attention are very well researched in psychology, they have not been sufficiently studied by epistemologists. In this book, Abrol Fairweather and Carlos Montemayor develop and defend a theory of epistemic achievements that requires the manifestation of cognitive agency. They examine empirical work on the psychology of attention and assertion, and use it to ground a normative theory of epistemic achievements and virtues. The resulting study is the first sustained, naturalized virtue epistemology, and will be of interest to readers in epistemology, cognitive science, and beyond.

    • Readers in both psychology and philosophy will benefit from an original and interdisciplinary explanation of the psychology of epistemic motivation
    • Offers a historical assessment of previous attempts at providing a motivation-based approach to epistemic achievements within a reliabilist framework, contributing to key debates on the relation between ability, motivation, and credit
    • Presents new ideas on the psychology of curiosity and its relation to linguistic motivations, particularly assertion
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This is an excellent book … The reader gets a balanced, critical account of how virtue epistemology stands today. The argumentation is judicious and insightful. I learned a great deal from it, and so, I think, will anybody who reads it.' Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

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    Product details

    • Date Published: January 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107461574
    • dimensions: 230 x 150 x 10 mm
    • weight: 0.3kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: why only agents are knowers
    1. Epistemic virtue, reliable attention and cognitive constitution
    2. Meta-epistemology and epistemic agency
    3. Success semantics and the etiology of success
    4. Epistemic agency
    5. Assertion as epistemic motivation
    6. Curiosity and epistemic achievement
    7. Collective agency, assertion and information.

  • Authors

    Abrol Fairweather, San Francisco State University
    Abrol Fairweather is Lecturer in Philosophy at San Francisco State University. He has edited several volumes on virtue epistemology, including Virtue Epistemology (with Linda Zagzebski, 2001), Naturalizing Epistemic Virtue (with Own Flanagan, 2014), and Epistemic Situationism (with Mark Alfano, 2017).

    Carlos Montemayor, San Francisco State University
    Carlos Montemayor is Associate Professor of Philosophy at San Francisco State University. He is the author of Minding Time: A Philosophical and Theoretical Approach to the Psychology of Time (2013) and Consciousness, Attention, and Conscious Attention (with H. H. Haladjian, 2015).

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