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April 8:    David Godden (Michigan State University)

“Corroborative evidence”

Abstract: Corroborative evidence has two probative effects: a primary effect by which it offers direct evidence for some claim, and a secondary effect by which it bolsters the probative value of some other piece of evidence. This paper argues that the bolstering effect of corroborative evidence is epistemically legitimate because corroboration provides a reason to count the belief based on the initial evidence as sensitive to, and safe from, defeat in a way that it was not previously recognized to be. Discovering that our belief is impervious to defeat in ways we previously didn’t recognize provides a reason to positively reappraise the probative strength of the evidence on which it is based. The final section of the paper relates the proposed sensitivity- and safety-based account of corroboration to an explanation-based account.

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Date(s) - March 11, 2016 - April 8, 2016
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

McMaster University, Kenneth Taylor Hall 109


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