Intuitions are used as evidence in philosophy

Journal article


Climenhaga, Nevin. (2018). Intuitions are used as evidence in philosophy. Mind: A Quarterly review of philosophy. 127(505), pp. 69 - 104. https://doi.org/10.1093/mind/fzw032
AuthorsClimenhaga, Nevin
Abstract

In recent years a growing number of philosophers writing about the methodology of philosophy have defended the surprising claim that philosophers do not use intuitions as evidence. In this paper I defend the contrary view that philosophers do use intuitions as evidence. I argue that this thesis is the best explanation of several salient facts about philosophical practice. First, philosophers tend to believe propositions which they find intuitive. Second, philosophers offer error theories for intuitions that conflict with their theories. Finally, philosophers are more confident in rejecting theories to the extent that they have several (intuitive) counter examples involving diverse cases. I argue that these facts are better explained by philosophers' using intuitions as evidence than by any plausible contrary explanations. I further argue that aspects of philosophical practice that my thesis may initially seem ill-suited to explain are in fact unsurprising whether or not my thesis is true.

Year2018
JournalMind: A Quarterly review of philosophy
Journal citation127 (505), pp. 69 - 104
PublisherOxford University Press
ISSN0026-4423
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1093/mind/fzw032
Scopus EID2-s2.0-85041185627
Page range69 - 104
Research GroupDianoia Institute of Philosophy
Publisher's version
File Access Level
Controlled
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
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