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The Folk on Knowing How

John Bengson, Marc A. Moffett and Jennifer C. Wright
Philosophical Studies: An International Journal for Philosophy in the Analytic Tradition
Vol. 142, No. 3 (Feb., 2009), pp. 387-401
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27734377
Page Count: 15
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The Folk on Knowing How
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Abstract

It has been claimed that the attempt to analyze know-how in terms of propositional knowledge over-intellectualizes the mind. Exploiting the methods of so-called "experimental philosophy", we show that the charge of over-intellectualization is baseless. Contra neo-Ryleans, who analyze know-how in terms of ability, the concrete-case judgments of ordinary folk are most consistent with the view that there exists a set of correct necessary and sufficient conditions for know-how that does not invoke ability, but rather a certain sort of propositional knowledge. To the extent that one's considered judgments agree with those of the folk (or to the extent that one is unwilling to contravene widespread judgments), this constitutes a strong prima facie case against neo-Ryleanism.

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