Salient Alternatives in Perspective

Mikkel Gerken, Chad Gonnerman, Joshua Alexander, John Waterman

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    This paper empirically investigates how perspective bears on putative salient alternative effects on knowledge ascriptions. Some theoretical accounts predict salient alternative effects in both first- and third-person perspective conditions. These include semantic accounts such as contextualism [Lewis 1996; DeRose 2009] and psychological accounts such as the epistemic focal bias account [Gerken 2013, 2017]. In contrast, other psychological accounts, such as the egocentric bias account [Nagel, 2010; Alexander et al. 2014] and the deference account [Turri 2017], only have clear predictions in third-person perspective conditions. Our study provides evidence of a salient alternative effect of the same magnitude in both first and third-person conditions. Thus, the study provides empirical evidence that might help to adjudicate between competing accounts in the literature on salient alternatives.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalAustralasian Journal of Philosophy
    Issue number4
    Pages (from-to)792-810
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


    • contextualism
    • egocentric bias
    • evaluator perspective
    • focal bias
    • knowledge ascriptions
    • salient alternative effects


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