Genealogies and Belief

Description: Recent epistemology has seen an upsurge of interest in the historical profile of our beliefs and judgments (doxastic attitudes more generally). This is reflected in contemporary philosophical debates over the epistemic significance of etiological or genealogical challenges, and irrelevant influences on beliefs. This workshop aims to provide a form for graduate students to present their research and engage with novel work relating to this emerging area in contemporary philosophy. As such, each speaker will be paired with a graduate student commentator to provide feedback on their work. The workshop will welcome graduate student presentations on the following (non-exhaustive) list of questions:

  • What is the normative significance of etiological or genealogical critiques of beliefs and judgments?

  • Do facts about the historical profile of our beliefs and judgments make something salient about their epistemic status?

  • Should we ever give up our (philosophical, moral, aesthetic, religious, political) beliefs in response to etiological challenges?

  • Can the historical profile of our doxastic attitudes ever vindicate them or strengthen their epistemic standing?

  • What set of facts or data should an etiological explanation of doxastic attitudes appeal to?

  • What methodological assumptions underlie the etiological explanations of our doxastic attitudes? 

Each talk will last 30 minutes. This will be followed by comments by graduate student commentators for 15-20 minutes and a 15-minute Q&A. The workshop will end with a talk by the keynote speaker (TBA).

The graduate workshop will be held on Sept. 19th, 2024, a day before the Critical Genealogies conference at UC Irvine from September 20th-21st, 2024.

Please contact graduate student, Tanuj Raut ( if you have any questions. 

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