Skepticism and Nihilism
Unger (Peter)
Source: Nous, Vol. 14, No. 4, Special Issue on Epistemology, Nov., 1980, pp. 517-545
Paper - Abstract

Paper Summary


Philosophers Index Abstract

    A dialectical argument is offered against the common sense view of things. This involves mutually reinforcing arguments for metaphysical nihilism and epistemological skepticism. The key idea is to give the evil demon's place in the Cartesian skeptical argument to a newly devised "sorites1" against the self. That yields arguments that the reader knows nothing for certain and, eventually, is not even reasonable in believing anything. These arguments are offered as an improvement on some in the author's "ignorance". The point of both skepticism and nihilism will be exploited once there is developed an appropriate precise language.

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