Title

Moore’s Paradox, Defective Interpretation, Justified Belief and Conscious Belief

Publication Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2010

Abstract

In this journal, Hamid Vahid argues against three families of explanation of Moore-paradoxicality. The first is the Wittgensteinian approach; I assert that p just in case I assert that I believe that p. So making a Moore-paradoxical assertion involves contradictory assertions. The second is the epistemic approach, one committed to: if I am justified in believing that p then I am justified in believing that I believe that p. So it is impossible to have a justified omissive Moore-paradoxical belief. The third is the conscious belief approach, being committed to: if I consciously believe that p then I believe that I believe that p. So if I have a conscious omissive Moore-paradoxical belief, then I have contradictory second-order beliefs. In their place, Vahid argues for the defective-interpretation approach, broadly that charity requires us to discount the utterer of a Moore-paradoxical sentence as a speaker. I agree that the Wittgensteinian approach is unsatisfactory. But so is the defective-interpretation approach. However, there is a satisfactory version of each of the epistemic and conscious-belief approaches.

Keywords

Moore, paradox, assertion, belief, irrationality, justification, speech-acts, consciousness

Discipline

Philosophy

Research Areas

Humanities

Publication

Theoria

Volume

76

Issue

3

First Page

221

Last Page

248

ISSN

0040-5825

Identifier

10.1111/j.1755-2567.2010.01073.x

Publisher

Wiley

Additional URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1755-2567.2010.01073.x

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