What is knowledge? Where does it come from? What kinds of knowledge are there? Can we know anything at all? What is the practical relevance of learning about epistemology?

This lucid and engaging introduction grapples with these central questions in the theory of knowledge, offering a clear, non-partisan view of the main themes of epistemology. Both traditional issues and contemporary ideas are discussed in twenty easily digestible chapters, each of which conclude with a useful summary of the main ideas discussed, study questions, annotated further reading and a guide to internet resources.

Each chapter also features text boxes providing bite-sized summaries of key concepts and major philosophers, and clear and interesting examples are used throughout. The book concludes with an annotated guide to general introductions to epistemology, a glossary of key terms, and a summary of the main examples used in epistemology. This an ideal first textbook in the theory of knowledge for undergraduates coming to philosophy for the first time.

The fourth edition has been revised and updated throughout and features four new chapters on applied epistemology, covering the relationship between the theory of knowledge and technology, education, law, and politics. In addition, the text as a whole has been refreshed to keep it up to date with current developments.

part I|64 pages

what is knowledge?

chapter 1|7 pages

some preliminaries

chapter 2|9 pages

the value of knowledge

chapter 3|11 pages

defining knowledge

chapter 4|11 pages

the structure of knowledge

chapter 5|13 pages


chapter 6|11 pages

virtues and faculties

part II|43 pages

where does knowledge come from?

chapter 7|10 pages


chapter 8|11 pages

testimony and memory

chapter 9|10 pages

a priority and inference

chapter 10|10 pages

the problem of induction

part III|44 pages

what kinds of knowledge are there?

chapter 11|13 pages

scientific knowledge

chapter 12|15 pages

religious knowledge

chapter 13|14 pages

moral knowledge

part IV|38 pages

how can the theory of knowledge be applied to particular domains?

chapter 14|10 pages


chapter 15|8 pages


chapter 16|9 pages


chapter 17|9 pages


part V|31 pages

do we have any knowledge?

chapter 18|8 pages

scepticism about other minds

chapter 19|13 pages

radical scepticism

chapter 20|8 pages

truth and objectivity