An Essay on Belief and Acceptance

Paperback | April 30, 1999

byL. Jonathan Cohen

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In this original and incisive book, one of Britain's most eminent philosophers contends that those who analyse the concept of knowledge do not distinguish adequately between voluntary belief and voluntary acceptance. The distinction, elucidated by the author, turns out to be vital forunderstanding many important issues in epistemology, philosophy of mind, and cognitive science.

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In this incisive new monograph one of Britain's most eminent philosophers explores the often overlooked tension between voluntariness and involuntariness in human cognition. He seeks to counter the widespread tendency for analytic epistemology to be dominated by the concept of belief. Is scientific knowledge properly conceived as being...

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In this original and incisive book, one of Britain's most eminent philosophers contends that those who analyse the concept of knowledge do not distinguish adequately between voluntary belief and voluntary acceptance. The distinction, elucidated by the author, turns out to be vital forunderstanding many important issues in epistemology,...

L. Jonathan Cohen, Emeritus Fellow, The Queen's College, Oxford.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:174 pagesPublished:April 30, 1999Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198236042

ISBN - 13:9780198236047

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From Our Editors

In this incisive new monograph one of Britain's most eminent philosophers explores the often overlooked tension between voluntariness and involuntariness in human cognition. He seeks to counter the widespread tendency for analytic epistemology to be dominated by the concept of belief. Is scientific knowledge properly conceived as being embodied, at its best, in a passive feeling of belief or in an active policy of acceptance? Should a jury's verdict declare what its members involuntarily believe or what they voluntarily accept? And should statements and assertions be presumed to express what their authors believe or what they accept? Does such a distinction between belief and acceptance help to resolve the paradoxes of self-deception and akrasia? Must people be taken to believe everything entailed by what they believe, or merely to accept everything entailed by what they accept? Through a systematic examination of these problems, the author sheds new light on issues of crucial importance in contemporary epistemology, philosophy of mind, and cognitive science.

Editorial Reviews

`his book contains a wealth of insights and onyone with an interest in epistemology and action theory has much to gain by a careful study of Cohen's arguments.'Anne Bezuidenhout, The Review of Metaphysics