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In the field of epistemology, naturalism holds that there are no a priori norms for guiding our belief formation: we must start our inquiries in situ, assuming some beliefs and the general reliability of our basic cognitive practices to justfy others. Naturalized epistemololgy seeks to motivate norms for cognitive enquiry on such a naturalistic basis. The author argues that, whilst naturalism must be embraced, this more ambitious project is in vain - to the extent one can justify naturalistic norms, they are not needed for optimal rational belief formation.
JONATHAN KNOWLES gained a PhD in 1995 at Birkbeck College, University of London with a thesis on the philosophy of cognitive science and language. He then moved to Norway to lecture at the University of Oslo. He presently holds a position in the Philosophy Department of the Norwegian University of Science and Techology in Trondheim, Norway. He has published several articles in the philosophy of mind and cognitive science, and in the philosophy of science.