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Appears in Collections:Law and Philosophy Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Understanding Undermining Defeat
Author(s): Melis, Giacomo
Keywords: Epistemology
Justificatory process
Issue Date: Sep-2014
Date Deposited: 30-Jun-2017
Citation: Melis G (2014) Understanding Undermining Defeat. Philosophical Studies, 170 (3), pp. 433-442.
Abstract: Taking the inspiration from some points made by Scott Sturgeon and Albert Casullo, I articulate a view according to which an important difference between undermining and overriding defeaters is that the former require the subject to engage in some higher-order epistemic thinking, while the latter don’t. With the help of some examples, I argue that underminers push the cognizer to reflect on the way she formed a belief by challenging the epistemic worthiness of either the source of justification or the specific justificatory process. By contrast, overriders needn’t pose any such challenge. I also consider some problems for the proposed view, and I put forward some possible solutions. Finally, I provide some details on how undermining defeat works in different cases.
DOI Link: 10.1007/s11098-013-0238-z
Rights: This is the accepted version of an article whose final and definitive form is published in Philosophical Studies. Philosophical Studies is available online at: The article is available at the following permanent link: Please cite the published version only

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