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Trusting others. The epistemological authority of testimony

UPV/EHU - University of the Basque Country
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  • Testimony
  • Social Epistemology
  • Joint Actions
  • Trust
  • Philosophy


I propose to consider the interpersonal character of testimony as a kind of social bond created by the mutual intention of sharing knowledge. The paper explores the social mechanism that supports this mutual intention starting from an initial situation of modelling the other’s epistemic perspective. Accepting testimony as a joint action creates epistemic duties and responsibilities and the eventual success can be considered as a genuine achievement at the social level of epistemology. Trust is presented here as the symptom that both parties are involved in such a social bond.

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