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date: 21 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Truth is widely held to be a cognitive value—perhaps because, other things being equal, it is better to believe a proposition if it is true than if it is false. But even if this is a genuine aspect of the value of truth, it is rather coarse-grained. Not all truths are equally valuable, from a cognitive point of view, and neither are all falsehoods equally disvaluable. The concept of truthlikeness, or of closeness to the truth, holds out the promise of a richer, more fine-grained classification of propositions, suitable not just for the up or down evaluation of isolated beliefs, but for the calibrated evaluation of cognitive progress in an inquiry. This chapter reviews approaches to truthlikeness, and some of the problems they face.

Keywords: truth, truthlikeness, cognitive value, Popper, probability, versimilitude

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