Vice Epistemology  book cover
1st Edition

Vice Epistemology

ISBN 9781138504431
Published October 15, 2020 by Routledge
278 Pages 4 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Some of the most problematic human behaviors involve vices of the mind such as arrogance, closed-mindedness, dogmatism, gullibility, and intellectual cowardice, as well as wishful or conspiratorial thinking. What sorts of things are epistemic vices? How do we detect and mitigate them? How and why do these vices prevent us from acquiring knowledge, and what is their role in sustaining patterns of ignorance? What is their relation to implicit or unconscious bias? How do epistemic vices and systems of social oppression relate to one another? Do we unwittingly absorb such traits from the process of socialization and communities around us? Are epistemic vices traits for which we can blamed? Can there be institutional and collective epistemic vices?

This book seeks to answer these important questions about the vices of the mind and their roles in our social and epistemic lives, and is the first collection of its kind. Organized into three parts, chapters by outstanding scholars explore the nature of epistemic vices, specific examples of these vices, and case studies in applied vice epistemology, including education and politics.

Alongside these foundational questions, the volume offers sophisticated accounts of vices both new and familiar. These include epistemic arrogance and servility, epistemic injustice, epistemic snobbishness, conspiratorial thinking, procrastination, and forms of closed-mindedness.

Vice Epistemology is essential reading for students of ethics, epistemology, and virtue theory, and various areas of applied, feminist, and social philosophy. It will also be of interest to practitioners, scholars, and activists in politics, law, and education.

Table of Contents

Introduction: From Epistemic Vices to Vice Epistemology Ian James Kidd, Heather Battaly, and Quassim Cassam

Part 1: Foundational Issues

1. The Structure of Intellectual Vices Jason Baehr

2. The Metaphysical Foundations of Vice Epistemology Quassim Cassam

3. Ignorance, Arrogance, and Privilege: Vice Epistemology and the Epistemology of Ignorance Alessandra Tanesini

4. Epistemic Corruption and Social Oppression Ian James Kidd

Part 2: Collectives, Institutions, and Networks

5. Institutional Epistemic Vices: The Case of Institutional Inertia Miranda Fricker

6. Capital Vices, Institutional Failures, and Epistemic Neglect in a County Jail José Medina

7. Implicit Bias and Epistemic Vice Jules Holroyd

8. Vectors of Epistemic Insecurity Emily Sullivan and Mark Alfano

Part 3: Analyses of Specific Vices

9. Quitting, Procrastinating, and Slacking Off Heather Battaly

10. Epistemic Insensitivity: An Insidious and Consequential Vice Maura Priest

11. Intellectual Snobs Charlie Crerar

Part 4: Applied Vice Epistemology

12. Teaching to the Test: How Schools Discourage Phronesis Casey Johnson

13. Vices of Questioning in Public Discourse Lani Watson.


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Ian James Kidd is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of Nottingham, UK.

Heather Battaly is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut, USA.

Quassim Cassam is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Warwick, UK.