© 2018

Epistemic Relativism and Scepticism

Unwinding the Braid


  • Introduces a new strategy for resisting epistemic relativism

  • Written in an accessible style

  • Explores much of the recent scholarship on epistemic relativism


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Steven Bland
    Pages 1-14
  3. Steven Bland
    Pages 63-85
  4. Steven Bland
    Pages 87-105
  5. Steven Bland
    Pages 107-128
  6. Steven Bland
    Pages 129-144
  7. Steven Bland
    Pages 145-173
  8. Steven Bland
    Pages 175-214
  9. Steven Bland
    Pages 215-218
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 219-234

About this book


This book confronts the threats of epistemic relativism and Pyrrhonian scepticism to analytic philosophy.  Epistemic relativists reject absolute notions of knowledge and justification, while sceptics claim that knowledge and justification of any kind are unattainable.  If either of these views is correct, then there can be no objective basis for thinking that one set of methods does a better job of delivering accurate information than any other set of methods. Philosophers have generally sought to resist these threats by responding to the argument that seems to motivate both positions: the Agrippan trilemma.  Steven Bland argues that this is a mistaken strategy. He surveys the most influential responses to the Agrippan trilemma, and shows that none of them succeeds in undermining epistemic relativism.  Bland also offers a new, dialectical strategy of challenging epistemic relativism by uncovering how epistemic methods depend on one another for their applications.  By means of this novel analysis, the book concludes that there are principled reasons to prefer naturalistic to non-naturalistic methods, even if these reasons do little to ease the threat of scepticism.


scepticism skepticism Pyrrhonian naturalism Wittgenstein

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Huron University College at Western UniversityLondonCanada

About the authors

Steven Bland is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Huron University College at Western University, Ontario, Canada.  His work focuses on foundational issues in epistemology, the philosophy of science, and early analytic philosophy.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Epistemic Relativism and Scepticism
  • Book Subtitle Unwinding the Braid
  • Authors Steven Bland
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages Religion and Philosophy Philosophy and Religion (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-94672-6
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-030-06895-0
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-94673-3
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XII, 234
  • Number of Illustrations 0 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Epistemology
    Electoral Politics
  • Buy this book on publisher's site