Philosophy professor publishes new book on epistemic normativity

The latest book by Philosophy Professor Matthew Chrisman is now available.

Front cover of book

Over 15 years in the making Belief, Agency, and Knowledge: Essays on Epistemic Normativity addresses basic philosophical questions, such as: What is the difference between

a belief and a headache when it comes to the way in which they belong essentially to an individual; what is the difference between a belief and an action when it comes to the ways in which we hold each other responsible?

Professor Chrisman states…

"It’s common in epistemology and elsewhere to think we have considerable individual autonomy over our beliefs, even the power to decide what to believe. But it’s also common in philosophical psychology and cognitive science to think that people’s beliefs are subject to strong and often unknown outside influences. This book attempts to overcome the tension between these two thoughts. It does so by looking to broader epistemological and psychological systems of which belief is a part — both within individual’s active maintenance of their own belief system and within communities of people pursuing shared knowledge."

Professor Chrisman’s previous book was on metaethics and the philosophy of language. This new book represents his considered views about important topics in epistemology.  

He says, “I have published several articles on the topics of this book in past, but many of these now feel outdated and not completely reflective of my views. So, I was pleased the Oxford University Press asked me to revise and add significantly to that material in order to produce an integrated picture of the agency we have with respect to our beliefs and the source of the norms and values which govern our beliefs.”

"This book is a synthesis of several ideas I have been working on for more than 15 years. So I am especially proud to see it out in print today.”

Belief, Agency, and Knowledge is available now through Oxford University Press.

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