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A Note Concerning Infinite Regresses of Deferred Justification

Research paper by Paul D. Thorn

Indexed on: 07 Oct '16Published on: 17 Sep '16Published in: Philosophia



Abstract

Abstract An agent’s belief in a proposition, E0, is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification just in case the belief that E0 is justified, and the justification for believing E0 proceeds from an infinite sequence of propositions, E0, E1, E2, etc., where, for all n ≥ 0, E n+1 serves as the justification for E n . In a number of recent articles, Atkinson and Peijnenburg claim to give examples where a belief is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification. I argue here that there is no reason to regard Atkinson and Peijnenburg’s examples as cases where a belief is so justified. My argument is supported by careful consideration of the grounds upon which relevant beliefs are held within Atkinson and Peijnenburg’s examples.AbstractAn agent’s belief in a proposition, E0, is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification just in case the belief that E0 is justified, and the justification for believing E0 proceeds from an infinite sequence of propositions, E0, E1, E2, etc., where, for all n ≥ 0, E n+1 serves as the justification for E n . In a number of recent articles, Atkinson and Peijnenburg claim to give examples where a belief is justified by an infinite regress of deferred justification. I argue here that there is no reason to regard Atkinson and Peijnenburg’s examples as cases where a belief is so justified. My argument is supported by careful consideration of the grounds upon which relevant beliefs are held within Atkinson and Peijnenburg’s examples.000012n n+1n n n