Ergo, Volume 3, No. 24, 609-637, 2016
This article offers my interpretation of Descartes's method of doubt. I examine Descartes's pedagogy—as exemplified by The Search for Truth as well as the Meditations—in order to argue for the sincerity of the universal doubts engendered by the First Meditation.
The first part of my dissertation distinguishes the attitudes of belief that people attribute to each other in ordinary life from the cognitive states of belief posited by (some) cognitive scientists. The second part defends the Rylean view that to have an attitude of belief is to live—to be disposed to act, react, think and feel—in a pattern that an actual belief attributor identifies with taking the world to be some way.
Part 1: Belief as Attitude, Belief as Cog
Chapter 1: A Rylean ancestry
Chapter 2: Varieties of belief
Chapter 3: How beliefs are like colors
Chapter 4: Beliefs as inner causes?
Part 2: The Metaphysics of Belief in Practice
Chapter 5: Beliefs as attributor-relative patterns of living
Chapter 6: Styles of belief
Chapter 7: Interpretivism and norms
Chapter 8: Brute believers and monkey mindreaders
(Please email me for chapter drafts.)