Design Hypotheses Behave Like Skeptical Hypotheses (Or: Why We Cannot Know that Design Hypotheses Are False)

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

It is often claimed that, as a result of scientific progress, we now know that the natural
world displays no design. Although we have no interest in defending design hypotheses,
we will argue that establishing claims to the effect that we know the denials of
design hypotheses is more difficult than it seems. We do so by issuing two skeptical
challenges to design-deniers. The first challenge draws inspiration from radical skepticism
and shows how design claims are at least as compelling as radical skeptical
scenarios in undermining knowledge claims, and in fact probably more so. The second
challenge takes its cue from skeptical theism and shows how we are typically not in an
epistemic position to rule out design.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69–90
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal for the Study of Skepticism
Volume7
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017

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Skeptical Hypotheses
Scientific Progress
Denial
Skeptical Theism

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title = "Design Hypotheses Behave Like Skeptical Hypotheses (Or: Why We Cannot Know that Design Hypotheses Are False)",
abstract = "It is often claimed that, as a result of scientific progress, we now know that the naturalworld displays no design. Although we have no interest in defending design hypotheses,we will argue that establishing claims to the effect that we know the denials ofdesign hypotheses is more difficult than it seems. We do so by issuing two skepticalchallenges to design-deniers. The first challenge draws inspiration from radical skepticismand shows how design claims are at least as compelling as radical skepticalscenarios in undermining knowledge claims, and in fact probably more so. The secondchallenge takes its cue from skeptical theism and shows how we are typically not in anepistemic position to rule out design.",
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Design Hypotheses Behave Like Skeptical Hypotheses (Or: Why We Cannot Know that Design Hypotheses Are False). / van Woudenberg, R.; de Ridder, G.J.

In: International Journal for the Study of Skepticism, Vol. 7, No. 2, 01.01.2017, p. 69–90.

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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