Is epistemic safety threatened by Frankfurt cases? A reply to Kelp

Main Article Content

Domingos Faria


I intend to argue that the counterexamples inspired by the Frankfurt-type cases against the necessity of an epistemic safety condition for knowledge are not plausible. The epistemic safety condition for knowledge is a modal condition recently supported by Sosa (2007) and Pritchard (2015), among others, and can be formulated as follows: (SC) If S knows that p on basis B, then S’s true belief that p could not have easily been false on basis B. I will try to argue that the safety condition, expressed in (SC), is still necessary for knowledge and that, therefore, epistemic safety is not threatened by Frankfurt-type cases. In particular, I want to show that Kelp’s counterexamples are ineffective against (SC).


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

How to Cite
FARIA, D. Is epistemic safety threatened by Frankfurt cases? A reply to Kelp. Diametros, p. 1-6, 10 Apr. 2020.
Share |


Comesaña J. (2013), “Safety and Epistemic Frankfurt Cases,” [in:] Virtuous Thoughts: The Philosophy of Ernest Sosa, J. Turri (ed.), Springer, Dordrecht: 165–178.

Engel M. (1992), “Is Epistemic Luck Compatible with Knowledge?,” Southern Journal of Philosophy 30 (2): 59–75.


Frankfurt H. (1969), “Alternate Possibilities and Moral Responsibility,” Journal of Philosophy 66 (23): 829–839.


Goldman A. (1976), “Discrimination and Perceptual Knowledge,” Journal of Philosophy 73 (20): 771–791.


Goldman A. (1979), “What Is Justified Belief?,” [in:] Justification and Knowledge, G.S. Pappas (ed.), D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht: 1–23.

Kelp C. (2009), “Knowledge and Safety,” Journal of Philosophical Research 34: 21–31.


Kelp C. (2016), “Epistemic Frankfurt Cases Revisited,” American Philosophical Quarterly, 53 (1): 27–37.

Kelp C. (2019), Good Thinking: A Knowledge First Virtue Epistemology, Routledge, New York.


Neta R., Rohrbaugh G. (2004), “Luminosity and the Safety of Knowledge,” Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 85 (4): 396–406.


Pritchard D. (2005), Epistemic Luck, Oxford University Press, Oxford.


Pritchard D. (2015), “Anti-Luck Epistemology and the Gettier Problem,” Philosophical Studies 172 (1): 93–111.


Pritchard D. (2016), “Epistemic Risk,” Journal of Philosophy 113 (11): 550–571.


Sosa E. (2007), A Virtue Epistemology: Apt Belief and Reflective Knowledge, Volume I, Oxford University Press, Oxford.