Next Monday, December 11, Léna Mudry will give the following talk: “Suspension of Judgement, Inquiry and High Stakes”.
Here is the link for the online meeting, if you cannot attend in person: https://teams.microsoft.com/l/meetup-join/19%3ameeting_NTg1YWMyM2YtNTExZi00Y2JiLTgwMDktZjViOGQ0YjFlNzVh%40thread.v2/0?context=%7b%22Tid%22%3a%2288c9873b-3065-42a0-9f3c-ac864c0ac788%22%2c%22Oid%22%3a%2295152ecd-5dcb-4819-b4c7-e9b2e4b24d9d%22%7d
Suspension of judgement is often closely associated with inquiry (Friedman 2017, 2019; Fritz 2020; Lord 2021). For example, Jane Friedman argues that we suspend judgement to inquire (2017). Interestingly, these philosophers have also provided an inquiry-based explanation of high stakes cases. In a nutshell, a belief that P is justified only if one ought not to inquire further. Due to insufficient attention paid to cases in which a subject already has a belief, they are liable to counter examples, as well as a stability worry – just as other encroachment views.
Other have loosened the link between suspension and inquiry but argue that suspension as an action is epistemically appropriate when it promotes the aim of inquiry (McGrath 2021). To wait until we get more evidence increases our chances to form a true belief.
As I see it, suspension of judgement is neither necessary to inquire (pace Friedman), nor should we conflate the aim of inquiry with the aim(s) of suspension (pace McGrath). Ramsey claimed that we, as inquirers, “are not thinking about our own thinking but about ships disappearing and the earth being round” (1991: 40). But we, as suspenders, are concerned with our judgement. They are the objects of our thoughts. Or so I’ll argue. In this tall I will first develop an action account of suspension. Second, I will specify its relationship with inquiry. Finally, I will account for the intuition behind high stakes scenarios while avoiding the pitfalls of encroachment views.
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