Does The Causal Theory Of Knowledge Solve The Gettier Problem?

686 words - 3 pages

The purpose of this paper is to argue that Alvin Goldman's paper "A Causal Theory of Knowing" does not solve the problem in Edmund Gettier's paper "Is Justified True Belief Knowledge?" To argue the old view of knowledge, Gettier presents a case in which a Subject (S) is justified in believing that a proposition (P) and P entails another proposition (Q). S deduces Q from P and accepts Q. Then S is justified in believing Q. In the first Case that Gettier presents however, P is falsely justified, but Q is a true justified belief: Smith (S) is justified in believing that Jones is the man who will get the job and Jones has ten coins in his pocket (P). Thus, the man who will get the job has ten coins in his pocket (Q). S is justified in believing that P because the president of the company (a reliable source) tells him so. But then, Smith is actually the one who gets the job. Coincidentally; he also has ten coins in his pocket. Therefore, it is true that the man who gets the job DOES have ten coins in his pocket, but it is not Jones. The proposition P in which Smith inferred Q from is falsely justified. As a result, Gettier states that Smith does not actually know that the man who gets the job has ten coins in his pocket. In this counterexample of the traditional view of knowledge that Gettier illustrates, a true justified belief evolved from a false justified belief. What the Gettier problem shows us is that in order for a true belief to qualify as knowledge, it must satisfy two conditions; it must not be a lucky guess (that is, it must be justified), and it must not be a lucky truth. A true belief that isn't a lucky guess, it may still be a lucky truth, and thus fall short of being knowledge. So where must knowledge come from?

Goldman states that S knows p if and only if, p is causally connected in an appropriate way with S's belief...

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