Philosophy, Department of


Date of this Version



Journal of Philosophical Research 27 (2002), pp. 311–328.

doi: 10.5840/jpr_2002_3


Copyright © 2002 Philosophy Documentation Center. Used by permission.


When someone believes something that is justified for her, what part does the subject play in her state of being justified? I will answer this question by developing a strong internalist account of justification according to which the justification of a believing for a subject consists in her having grounds for her belief, and holding the belief in recognition of those grounds. But the internalist theory I defend incorporates key elements of reliabilism into its account. Using perception as a model for justification, I show how ordinary perceivers would appeal to external factors to support their perceptual beliefs, and normally suppose that their beliefs are reliably connected to the objects their beliefs are about. I find in this feature of our common justificatory practice a sufficient basis for positing an externalist condition on justification—namely that subjects are justified only if their beliefs are reliably connected to their objects.

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