May 232016

Haack, Susan, and . Evidence and Inquiry: Towards Reconstruction in Epistemology

1995, Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.

Publisher’s Note: In this important work, Haack develops an original theory of empirical evidence or justification, and argues its appropriateness to the goals of inquiry. In so doing, Haack provides detailed critical case studies of Lewis’s foundationalism; Davidson’s and Bonjour’s coherentism; Popper’s ‘epistemology without a knowing subject’; Quine’s naturalism; Goldman’s reliabilism; and Rorty’s, Stich’s, and the Churchlands’ recent obituaries of epistemology.

Comment: This book includes excellent critique of pure coherentist and pure foundationalist theories of knowledge, with defense of Hacck's integrated doctrine of "foundherentism". As it is highly recommended by Putnam, this book is a fine introduction and a significant contribution to contemporary epistemology. It includes powerful and highly detailed criticism to a range of contemporary philosophers - Sir Karl Popper, W. V. O. Quine, Richard Rorty, Alvin Goldman, and Paul and Patricia Churchland among others - that can be used when views of those philosophers are examined in teaching.

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