Arguments Against The Gettier Theory

The standard analysis of knowledge is the Tripartite Theory (or, JTB, for short). This theory defines knowledge as ‘justified true belief’: S knows that P if and only if (i) P is true, (ii) S believes that P, and (iii) S is justified in believing that P. Each of these three conditions (truth, belief, and justification) is necessary for knowledge, and altogether they are jointly sufficient for having knowledge. As a counter to JTB, Edmund Gettier posed a serious challenge when he introduced the Gettier problem. The Gettier problems are cases of situations in which a person has a justified true belief that fails to be knowledge. Lets look at one case.

Smith and Jones both applied for a job. The company president told Smith that Jones would
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They show that justification, truth, and belief conditions are insufficient for knowledge, and that JTB is an incorrect analysis. This leads to the question: how is knowledge defined? The challenge of the Gettier problem is to modify or replace JTB according so that there is a ‘Gettier-proof’ definition of knowledge. I will now argue for the view that Alvin Goldman’s causal theory best solves the Gettier problem.
Goldman’s causal theory proposes that the failing within Gettier cases is one of causality, in which the justified true belief is caused too oddly or abnormally to be knowledge. There is a lack of causal connection between the belief and the truth conditions. Causal theory states that “S knows that P if and only if the fact P is causally connected in an ‘appropriate’ way with S’s believing P,” in which ‘appropriate’ causal processes include: (1) perception, (2) memory, (3) a causal chain which is correctly reconstructed by inferences, and (4) combinations of (1), (2), and (3) (BD,
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As mentioned above, the additional requirements make JTB stronger. The causal theory requires that there be a causal connection and a proper reconstruction between the belief condition and the truth condition. The causal connection provides justification for true belief. Thereby, eliminating inferences that begin with false propositions. And, as one relies on false propositions for fallibilism, the fallibility feature of the Gettier example is eliminated as a consequence. The correct reconstruction of a causal chain requires admixtures of causes and inferences, and causes and logical connections. The correct reconstruction makes direct, logical connections between all of the important links. This ensures proper justification for the truth and belief conditions, thereby eliminating any possibility of luck in knowing. Therefore, the Gettier problem has been thwarted, because causal theory relies on identifying, justifiably, what causes true belief, without instances of accidental

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