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Coherence as a Test for Truth

Robert Stern
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
Vol. 69, No. 2 (Sep., 2004), pp. 296-326
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40040722
Page Count: 31
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Coherence as a Test for Truth
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Abstract

This paper sets out to demonstrate that a contrast can be drawn between coherentism as an account of the structure of justification, and coherentism as a method of inquiry. Whereas the former position aims to offer an answer to the 'regress of justification' problem, the latter position claims that coherence plays a vital and indispensable role as a criterion of truth, given the fallibility of cognitive methods such as perception and memory. It is argued that 'early' coherentists like Bradley and Blanshard were coherentists of the latter kind, and that this sort of coherentism is not open to certain sorts of standard objection that can be raised against justificatory coherentism.

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