Epistemic Friction: Reflections on Knowledge, Truth, and Logic

Research paper by Gila Sher

Indexed on: 11 Dec '09Published on: 11 Dec '09Published in: Erkenntnis


Knowledge requires both freedom and friction. Freedom to set up our epistemic goals, choose the subject matter of our investigations, espouse cognitive norms, design research programs, etc., and friction (constraint) coming from two directions: the object or target of our investigation, i.e., the world in a broad sense, and our mind as the sum total of constraints involving the knower. My goal is to investigate the problem of epistemic friction, the relation between epistemic friction and freedom, the viability of foundationalism as a solution to the problem of friction, an alternative solution in the form of a neo-Quinean model, and the possibility of solving the problem of friction as it applies to logic and the philosophy of logic within that model.