Department of Philosophy Colloquium with speaker Elís Miller Larsen, Brown University. The talk will take place from 3:00 - 5:00 pm in Social Science 224.
Many philosophers take for granted closed-mindedness is epistemically unacceptable. Closed-mindedness is described as an “unwillingness or inability to engage seriously with relevant intellectual options” (Battaly 2018). And where the open-minded person is “disposed to gain, lose, and revise belief in a particular, reasonable way” (Arpaly 2011), the closed-minded person is disposed to exhibit unreasonable habits in belief formation and belief revision. Yet—and intuitively—it seems plausible that a person could be too open-minded. Revising one’s beliefs so much as to form worse ones, or being so accepting as to fail to discern credible sources, may prove equally problematic from an epistemic perspective. In some cases, then, closed-mindedness must be acceptable. Exactly how closed-mindedness could be epistemically acceptable is the purpose of this paper.