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Skeptical Parasitism and the Continuity Argument

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Recent literature on skepticism has raised a nearly univocal voice in condemning skeptical argumentation on the grounds that such argumentation necessarily involves our adopting some nonordinary or unnatural perspective. Were this really so, then skeptical conclusions would not speak to us in the way in which skeptics think they do; we would be “insulated” from any such conclusions. I argue that skeptical argumentation need not rely on any nonordinary or unnatural standards. Rather, the skeptic's procedure is to offer a critique from within. Having given my argument for this claim (which I call the Continuity Argument), I consider and respond to two important objections. I conclude that the skeptic has a powerful meta-argument to be deployed in defending the legitimacy of his skeptical conclusions against the slings and arrows of (those I call) the half-true theorists.
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Keywords: contextualism; epistemic standards; insulation; knowledge; skepticism; the familiar; the ordinary

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, USA

Publication date: 2004-10-01

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