ABSTRACT

Elgin offers a discussion of some nuances so far neglected in the peer disagreement literature. Elgin points out that the so-called solutions to instances of peer disagreement assume that disagreement is a problem to be solved when peers either conciliate or they remain steadfast. The assumption is that when peers disagree it is a problem because one of them must have made a mistake. But this, Elgin argues, is itself a mistake. There are many axes along which disagreement occurs, and progress in inquiry requires that we tolerate and explore together with people who disagree with us along some of these axes. Rather than being a problem to be solved, Elgin argues that these disagreements can be of epistemic benefit.