Wisdom has not been widely discussed in analytical epistemology. An interesting recent analysis comes from Stephen Grimm who argues that wisdom requires knowledge and that the traditional dichotomy between theoretical and practical wisdom doesn’t hold. I note a tension between these aspects of his work. He wishes to maintain that traditional exemplars of wisdom (such as Jesus, Buddha, Confucius) may still be termed ‘wise’ by his theory. But his knowledge condition seems to require that only a subset of those who hold conflicting views are really wise. I consider a number of possible responses to this and endorse a non-indexical contextualist approach which will allow the knowledge condition and also allow the traditional exemplars to be termed ‘wise’.
Hick, John. 1989. An Interpretation of Religion. Basingstoke: Macmillan.
Kenny, Anthony. 1986. A Path From Rome. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Lewis. David. 1996. “Elusive Knowledge”. Australasian Journal of Philosophy, 74, 549–67.
MacFarlane, John. 2009. “Nonindexical Contextualism”. Synthese, 166 (2), 231–250.
Morawetz, Thomas. 1978. Wittgenstein and Knowledge: The Importance of On Certainty. Brighton: Harvester.
O’Grady, Paul. 2002. Relativism. Chesham: Acumen.
Ryan, Sharon. 2012. “Wisdom, Knowledge, and Rationality”. Acta Analytica, 276, 2: 99–112.
Ryan, Sharon, (2013), “Wisdom”. In The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, edited by Edward N. Zalta. http://plato.stanford.edu/archives/sum2013/entries/wisdom/.
Williams, Paul. 2002. The Unexpected Way. London: Continuum.
Williamson, Tim. 2005. “Knowledge, Context and the Agent’s Point of View”. In Contextualism in Philosophy: Knowledge, Meaning and Truth, edited by Gerhard Preyer and Georg Peter, 91–114. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Wittgenstein, Ludwig. 1993. Philosophical Occasions, 1912-1951, edited by James Klagge and Alfred Nordmann. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company.
Yandell, Keith. 1999. Philosophy of Religion: A Contemporary Introduction. London: Routledge.
Zagzebski, Linda. 1996. Virtues of the Mind: An Inquiry into the Nature of Virtue and the Ethical Foundations of Knowledge. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Copyright (c) 2018 Roczniki Filozoficzne
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.