Explore BrainMass

Discussing the Theory of knowledge

Look especially for an understanding of Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Hume (or Locke) and Kant, Write a concise 750-1000-word summative account on the following:

What are the major areas of concern addressed by traditional philosophers of knowledge, and how do they compare with any concerns in this area?

What avenues of exploration in theory of knowledge will be useful in academia, and which do you consider inapplicable?

© BrainMass Inc. brainmass.com June 22, 2018, 2:53 pm ad1c9bdddf

Solution Preview

Dear Student,
Due to the very limited word count you have imposed, I can only discuss so much regarding the philosophers you have mentioned. For the purpose of expansion, please find additional suggested readings that are in print or web-based in the references section. Thank you for using Brainmass.

OTA 105878/Xenia Jones

Traditional Epistemology

Traditional epistemology (epistemology being the study of knowledge) is a view on the theory of knowledge that harkens back to the viewpoints of Classic thinkers like Plato and Socrates and ideas on knowledge by philosophers from the Enlightenment like Immanuel Kant and Rene Descartes. Questions that the traditional theory of knowledge asks are much the same as that of post-structuralist viewpoints and they are the following:

? What is knowledge?
? How is knowledge manufactured/acquired/realized?
? What do we know and how do we know?

For Plato, there are 2 levels of awareness - opinion and knowledge as could be gleaned from his work 'The Republic' via 'the myth of the Cave'. Opinions for him are transitory while knowledge is secure. This is evidence by his dialogue in 'Meno' -

"True opinions are a fine thing and do all sorts of good so long as they stay in their place, but they will not stay long. They run away from a man's mind; so they are not worth much until you tether them by working out a reason. . . . Once they are tied down, they become knowledge, and are stable. That is why knowledge is something more valuable than right opinion. What distinguishes the one from the other is the tether."

True knowledge is arrived at via an account, a justification of that knowledge. We know by questioning, by observing, by ...

Solution Summary

The solution explains and discusses the theory of knowledge via the work of key philosophers (Plato, Descartes, Kant, etc.) exploring what knowledge is, how it is formed and what constitutes it according to traditional as well as modern views. Following the APA-format, references are provided nd works cited. The solution is in the form of an essay. A word version is attached for easy printing.