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PhilosophyPart of Humanities

Justification - Naive realism

You’ve endorsed naïve realism.

For a long time, this view was widely rejected by philosophers on the basis of the argument from illusion. The main idea of this argument is that, since any accurate perception could be matched by an exactly corresponding illusory one, nothing can tell you in a given case whether your perception is accurate or not.

However, many contemporary philosophers, including John McDowell and Heather Logue, argue that the possibility of illusion does not show that you can't get immediate justification from perception when it is accurate.


For a more complete guide to this topic, you might consult the following entries from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy:
“Foundationalist Theories of Epistemic Justification”, by Richard Fumerton (
“Coherentist Theories of Epistemic Justification”, by Erik Olsson (
Also recommended are the following entries from the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy:
“Foundationalism”, by Ted Poston (
“Coherentism in Epistemology”, by Peter Murphy (
“Infinitism in Epistemology”, by Peter Klein and John Turri (
At Southampton, we run various modules that address these and similar issues, including Knowledge and Mind, Epistemology, Scepticism, and The Ethics of Belief. Many of our staff undertake research in this and related areas of epistemology, such as Dr. Kurt Sylvan, Dr. Genia Schönbaumsfeld, and Dr. Conor McHugh.
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