A philosophical study

مراجعة كتاب #5

The book should get 5 stars if it weren't for the very dry and complex writing style of Mr. Coady.

The book tackles the neglected topic of testimony and its significance in epistemology.

There is a general tendency towards defining knowledge only terms of what is "perceived" (i.e. using your 5 senses), this mode of thinking extends towards negating any value of knowledge stemming from testimony and/or logic.

I believe the book does a very good job in presenting a solid argument on the inter-dependencies of these tools in acquiring knowledge.

We use testimony as a source of knowledge in everyday life more than we use perception

The book first starts out by defining what knowledge is. Then Coady moves on to illustrate the vast areas of human life where testimony is used to acquire knowledge. Areas range from history, law, psychology, medical studies to the latter end of physics, orientation information and oblique testimony.

He then moves on to distinguish between Formal testimony (mainly used in Law) and Natural testimony which spans to a wider range of applications.

The chapters following critiques the different philosophical stances pertaining to Hearsay, and this is where the book becomes really confusing. Coady lists different arguments and then debunks them, but never seems to at the end provide a resolution or a clear proven approach to how Hearsay is important.

Nevertheless, the debates are fruitful and provides a lot of insights. I found myself in many instances saying to myself: 'huh, this is interesting, never thought of it that way'

If it weren’t for the dry presentation and complicated language I would’ve given the book 5 stars, however: