Epistemology

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Epistemology'

Epistemology Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    epistemology n : the philosophical theory of knowledge
Epistemology Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Epistemology \E*pis`te*mol"o*gy\, n. [Gr. ? knowledge + -logy.] The theory or science of the method or grounds of knowledge.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Epistemology'


Epistemology (from Greek ἐπιστήμη – epistēmē, "knowledge, science" + λόγος, "logos") or theory of knowledge is the branch of philosophy concerned with the nature and scope (limitations) of knowledge. It addresses the questions:

Much of the debate in this field has focused on analyzing the nature of knowledge and how it relates to connected notions such as truth, belief, and justification. It also deals with the means of production of knowledge, as well as skepticism about different knowledge claims.

The term was introduced into English by the Scottish philosopher James Frederick Ferrier (1808–1864).

In this article, and in epistemology in general, the kind of knowledge usually discussed is propositional knowledge, also known as "knowledge that". How is such knowledge related to "knowledge how" and "acquaintance-knowledge"? For example: in mathematics, it is known that 2 + 2 = 4, but there is also knowing how to add two numbers and knowing a person (e.g., oneself), place (e.g., one's hometown), thing (e.g., cars), or activity (e.g., addition). Some (though not all) philosophers think there is an important distinction between "knowing that", "knowing how", and "acquaintance-knowledge", with epistemology primarily interested in the first.

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