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The Australian National University

James Willoughby (ANU): …are doomed to repeat it (TPR)

Date and time

Tue, 21/03/2017 - 15:30 - 17:30


Coombs Seminar Room A

This talk is a TPR. It will contain an overview of my thesis and a paper. The question that I will answer in my thesis is: how confident should you be in your own philosophical theories? To answer this question I will be looking at some large sources of evidence that might undermine our confidence in our philosophical methods. These bodies of evidence are: widespread disagreement, experimental results from X-phil, and the history of philosophy. I will also develop an account of how to incorporate the particular type of evidence you get from these sources. The paper I will present will be on the historical aspect of my thesis. I will ask the question: does the history of philosophy undermine our confidence in our own philosophical positions? I will answer: no, not to any significant degree. The reason our history does not undermine our confidence is that we just do not have reliable information of the right kind about our history.

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