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date: 01 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter considers some epistemic aspects of interactions with those who are believed to be delusional. The chapter makes five main claims: first, for the day-to-day purposes of most individuals, it is helpful to understand delusions as extreme epistemic failures, failures that all are guilty of to some degree. Second, one should be cautious when attributing delusions to others because to call someone delusional can act to discredit them, and this can be especially dangerous when applied to members of oppressed groups. Third, delusional individuals can indeed be wronged by epistemic injustice. Fourth, epistemic responsibility for delusions needs to be extended beyond the individual holding delusional beliefs to the conditions that shape those beliefs. Finally, the virtue of epistemic humility offers several important epistemic benefits in interactions with delusional others.

Keywords: epistemic injustice, delusion, epistemic humility, epistemic responsibility, radical listening

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