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Volume 51 • Number 3

July 2014



Two for the Knowledge Goal of Inquiry

by Christoph Kelp

Suppose you ask yourself whether your father's record collection includes a certain recording of The Trout and venture to find out. At that time, you embark on an inquiry into whether your father owns the relevant recording. Your inquiry is a project with a specific goal: finding out whether your father owns the recording. This fact about your inquiry generalizes: inquiry is a goal-directed enterprise. A specific inquiry can be individuated by the question it aims to answer and by who aims to answer the question. Your inquiry into whether your father owns the recording differs from your inquiry into how many records your father owns because different questions are being asked. Your inquiry into whether your father owns the recording differs from my inquiry into whether he does because different people are inquiring. The goal of inquiry into a given question by an agent, α, can be characterized, neutrally, as α's having the answer to that question. I will here focus only on inquiries into whether questions and characterize the goal of inquiry into whether φ by α as α's having the answer to the question whether φ.

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ISSN: 2152-1123