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Epistemic Principles

A Primer for the Theory of Knowledge


Nicholas Rescher

Epistemic Principles: A Primer of the Theory of Knowledge presents a compact account of the basic principles of the theory of knowledge. In doing this, Nicholas Rescher aims to fill the current gap in contemporary philosophical theory of knowledge with a comprehensive analysis of epistemological fundamentals. The book is not a mere inventory of such rules and principles, but rather interweaves them into a continuous exposition of basic issues. Written at a user-friendly and accessible level, Epistemic Principles is an essential addition for both advanced undergraduate and graduate courses in epistemology.
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Chapter 9. The Epistemic Gap and Grades of Acceptance


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The two key factors for the rational acceptance of claims are their substantiation and coordination. The former is a matter of a claim’s evidentiation and credibility on its own merits; the latter is a matter of its fit into the wider environment of what is otherwise accepted—its contributions to the harmonization of our putative knowledge of things.

The resultant situation leads to the classification in Figure 9.1 of different grades of cognitive merit, correlative with increasingly demanding conditions of qualification.

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