Internalism and Externalism About Justification



What is INTERNALISM with respect to a concept X?

It is the view that X is a function solely of the internal first-person, cognitive perspective of the relevant subject. Alternatively, it is the view that X is a function of things that are consciously accessible from the first-person standpoint. [This is sometimes referred to as ACCESS INTERNALISM.]



What is EXTERNALISM with respect to a concept X?

It is the denial of INTERNALISM with respect to X.


All accounts of knowledge are externalist. Why?

(a) Truth Condition

(b) The Fourth Condition to handle Gettier Problems.
















Internalism with respect to Justification: The justification of a belief that p is a function of the evidence to which the subject has reflective access. (Conee and Feldman)


Two problems for access internalism (BonJour): (1) the problem of animals and children; (2) the potential skeptical implications.

A third problem (Pojman and Talbott): (3) the problem of the unreliability of some kinds of introspection (and the related problem of self-serving justifications).

















Externalism with Respect to Justification: The denial that justification is solely a function of the internal states of the subject. Pojman identifies two kinds of externalism with respect to justification, reliabilism and substantive naturalism. We will focus on reliabilism.


Reliabilism with Respect to Justification: A belief is justified The belief was caused or is sustained by a reliable cognitive process.


Why is reliabilism a form of externalism?


What is the reliabilist solution to the problem of induction?


Three problems for reliabilism: (1) Not necessary for justification: the Evil Genius (or Pojman's "I-2"); (2) Not sufficient for justification: Mr. Truetemp (or Samantha or Norman); (3) the generality problem.