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Reliabilism and the Suspension of Belief

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What are the conditions under which suspension of belief—or suspension, for short—is justified? Process reliabilists hold that our beliefs are justified if and only if these are produced or sustained by reliable cognitive processes. But they have said relatively little about suspension. Perhaps they think that we may easily extend an account of justified belief to deal with justified suspension. But it's not immediately clear how we may do so; in which case, evidentialism has a distinct advantage over reliabilism. In this paper, I consider some proposals as to how process reliabilists might seek to account for justified suspension. Although several of these proposals do not work, two are promising. The first such proposal appeals to the notion of propositional justification; the second involves weaving evidentialist elements into reliabilism. I'll argue that the second proposal is better than the first.
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Keywords: evidentialism; indicator reliabilism; justification; process reliabilism; suspension of belief; suspension of judgement

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: National University of Singapore,

Publication date: 02 April 2016

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