P.D. Magnus (qua philosopher)

Evidential Nihilism

I hit on the core idea when trying to teach the uniqueness/permissivism debate, I worked out some of the details in a series of blog posts, and then I wrote a paper.

Versions available


A considerable literature has grown up around the claim of Uniqueness, according to which evidence rationally determines belief. It is opposed to Permissivism, according to which evidence underdetermines belief. This paper highlights an overlooked third possibility, according to which there is no rational doxastic attitude. I call this Nihilism. I argue that adherents of the other two positions ought to reject it but that it might, nevertheless, obtain at least sometimes.


	AUTHOR = {P.D. Magnus},
	TITLE = {Evidential Nihilism},
	JOURNAL = {Analysis},
	YEAR = {2020},
	MONTH = oct,
	VOLUME = {80},
	NUMBER = {4},
	PAGES = {674--683},
	DOI = {10.1093/analys/anaa007}