Does Susan Haack’s Theory of Foundherentism Solve the Problem of Empirical Knowledge?

Chioma Winifred Ezeanya & Chukwuebuka Gabriel Otegbulu


Since the inception of philosophy as both an activity and discipline, its quest has never been unconnected with truth, reality and knowledge, leading to the emergence of diverse schools of thoughts and theories. Each of the theories is not without strengths and weaknesses. Susan Haack’s theory of foundherentism is one that tries to show the errors of previous theories of empirical knowledge. She considers her theory as a midway between the theories of foundationalism and coherentism in human knowledge. It is a theory where neither experience nor beliefs are either in isolation or occupy an extreme position. It is a theory where the ultimate evidence of a subject’s belief justification is the experiential evidence together with other factors that form or build up his/her belief system. This article, therefore, examines to what extent Haack’s Foundherentist theory provides us with the correct epistemic source for solving the problem of empirical justification of beliefs. The article is of the position that though foundherentism is a bold attempt, it has not been able to solve the epistemological problems that it intends to solve. The research methods are analysis, descriptive and evaluative methods. Keywords: Foundationalism, Coherentism, Foundherentism, Belief, Justification.

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