<philosophical terminolgy> belief that some or all human knowledge is impossible. Since even our best methods for learning about the world sometimes fall short of perfect certainty, skeptics argue, it is better to suspend belief than to rely on the dubitable products of reason. Classical skeptics include Pyrrho and Sextus Empiricus. In the modern era, Montaigne, Bayle, and Hume all advocated some form of skeptical philosophy. Fallibilism is a more moderate response to the lack of certainty. Recommended Reading: Skepticism: A Contemporary Reader, ed. by Keith Derose and Ted A. Warfield (Oxford, 1998); Skepticism, ed. by Ernest Sosa an, Enrique Villanueva (Blackwell, 2000); Richard Henry Popkin, The History of Skepticism from Erasmus to Spinoza (California, 1979); Barry Stroud, The Significance of Philosophical Skepticism (Clarendon, 1984); Panayot Butchvarov, Skepticism in Ethics (Indiana, 1989); and Skepticism, ed. by Michael Williams (Dartmouth, 1993).
[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]
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