The seminars are open events: women, men and all genders are welcome! So please feel free to bring anyone interested!
TINA FIRING: PHILOSOPHY WITHOUT INTUITIONS? A REPLY TO THE RELOCATION PROBLEM
Philosophy Without Intuitions? A Reply to the Relocation Problem
For the past decades, much debate has centered around the issue of intuition in philosophy. A lot of energy has been expended attempting to account for what intuitions are and whether the having of an intuition can provide an agent with justification. Despite the efforts, however, the dissensus characterizing the debate is striking. Some philosophers are nevertheless optimistic: they believe that we can say something about the nature of intuition and that intuition can be, and often is, a reliable source of knowledge. Others are pessimistic: they believe that experimental data has given us ample reason to question philosophers’ substantive reliance on intuition. According to a third view, however, both the optimism and the pessimism are unfounded. Both the intuition-friendly and the intuition-hostile philosophers go wrong, according to this view, in assuming intuition to play a central evidential role in philosophy in the first place. This underlying assumption, though widespread in contemporary analytic philosophy, is simply false. In my presentation, I hope to make clear why this third view (which I label the no-intuition view) is correct. The presentation will center around a thought experiment commonly assumed to be a paradigmatic example of a philosopher appealing to intuition as evidence against a philosophical theory, namely Keith Lehrer’s Truetemp case. My central claim will be this: the orthodox intuition-based story about what is going on in the Truetemp case is empirically undersupported, and thus we do not have reason to accept it. I will then propose an intuition-free reading of the same thought experiment and attempt to argue for why we should adopt this reading instead.