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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: October ::
Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.1967  Thursday, 9 October 2003

[1]     From:   Todd Pettigrew <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 8 Oct 2003 09:25:52 -0300
        Subj:   RE: SHK 14.1959 Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge

[2]     From:   Sean Lawrence <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 8 Oct 2003 07:06:41 -0700
        Subj:   RE: SHK 14.1959 Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Todd Pettigrew <
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Date:           Wednesday, 8 Oct 2003 09:25:52 -0300
Subject: 14.1959 Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge
Comment:        RE: SHK 14.1959 Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge

Marcia Eppich-Harris writes, of Gettier cases in Shakespeare,

"Seems to me that the most obvious example of this is when Romeo
believes, justifiably, that Juliet is dead, but she's not."

As I understand it, however, this is not a Gettier case because Romeo
believes something that is false. Another example from Gettier goes like
this (paraphrasing, I hope accurately): I believe that John has been
selected for a promotion at work because the boss has told me so. I also
have seen that John has 10 dollars in his pocket. Therefore, I believe
that the man with 10 dollars in his pocket has been selected for the
promotion.  BUT it turns out that the boss has changed his mind and has
selected me for the promotion instead, AND, without my realizing it, I
happen to have 10 dollars in my pocket. Thus, my belief that the guy
with 10 bucks has been promoted is true, supported by good reason but
still, says Gettier, not knowledge.

Examples from Shakespeare are tricky, though I agree that Othello has
some.  Benedick's and Beatrice's beliefs that each is in love with the
other in Much Ado is a possible. Hamlet's belief in Claudius' guilt
after the "Mousetrap" play is another possible.

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <
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Date:           Wednesday, 8 Oct 2003 07:06:41 -0700
Subject: 14.1959 Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge
Comment:        RE: SHK 14.1959 Shakespeare and the Theory of Knowledge

Thanks to Clifford for the citation.  Do most of the examples offered so
far actually qualify, though?  It strikes me that Othello has a
seemingly justified false belief, not a justified true belief, since
Desdemona isn't truly unfaithful.

Perhaps the manner in which everyone distrusts Richard III because of
his physique might be a better example.  As it turns out, they're right,
and they have evidence, at least in their own minds, but their reasons
for distrusting him aren't really justified by the fact that he turns
out to be untrustworthy in the end.

Cheers,
Sean.

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