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The University of Southampton
PhilosophyPart of Humanities

Justification - Foundations without evidence

A growing number of contemporary philosophers think that foundational beliefs need not be based on evidence at all (though some might be).

But how can a belief be justified even if it is not based on any evidence?

One suggestion is that a belief can be justified when it is formed by a reliable process, even if that process doesn’t involve considering any evidence for the belief. For example, visual perception is a reliable process.

Another suggestion is that there are certain assumptions that we are entitled to take for granted without evidence. For example, perhaps we are entitled to take for granted that the external world remains in existence when we close our eyes, even if we have no evidence for this.

Which of these views do you prefer?

The first oneThe second one
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