ArgLab • Colloquium

Tim Kenyon

Disagreement, from theory to practice

The past decade has seen an extraordinary growth of the epistemology of disagreement into a large and vigorous literature. That literature has primarily focused on a very limited range of topics, theories, and associated quasi-formal principles concerning rationality, truth, and proof. It is largely centred on the question, “What should I believe when I encounter disagreement from an epistemic peer?” This literature, I argue, is largely silent on some of the most important kinds of epistemic significance of disagreements. But even on the issues it does address, the literature is difficult to apply usefully to actual cases. I sketch some barriers to the applicability of the epistemology of disagreement, and offer suggestions for what an applied epistemology of disagreement might look like.


Tim Kenyon, University of Waterloo, Canada