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Knowledge of Our Own Beliefs Thanks to audiences at Carnegie Mellon University, the Rutgers Epistemology Conference, the Berkeley‐London Graduate Philosophy Conference, the London School of Economics, and King's College London for helpful criticism and discussion. Thanks in particular to Teddy Seidenfeld, Glen Shafer, Philip Dawid, Nick Shea, and Matt Parrott.

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There is a widespread view that in order to be rational we must mostly know what we believe. In the probabilistic tradition this is defended by arguments that a person who failed to have this knowledge would be vulnerable to sure loss, or probabilistically incoherent. I argue that even gross failure to know one's own beliefs need not expose one to sure loss, and does not if we follow a generalization of the standard bridge principle between first‐order and second‐order beliefs. This makes it possible for a subject to use probabilistic decision theory to manage in a rational way cases of potential failure of this self‐knowledge, as we find in implicit bias. Through such cases I argue that it is possible for uncertainty about what our beliefs are to be not only rationally permissible but advantageous.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2018

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