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David Kelley Ph.D

2 Mins
June 1, 1987

Skepticism is the belief that knowledge of reality is impossible and that man lacks any rational basis for certainty or confidence in what he thinks he knows. By undercutting the efficacy of reason, skepticism forces us to fall back on emotion, tradition, the authority of the church, mystical revelation and non-rational philosophies in order to make our personal and political choices.

For this reason, it is important to answer the attacks that skeptics have raised against the perceptual foundations of our knowledge.

Concentrating on four of the classical skeptical arguments — illusions, dreams, the malevolent god or diabolical scientist, and the brain in a vat —Dr. Kelley identifies the pattern that all these arguments take and exposes their underlying motive: the desire to exempt consciousness from the law of identity.

The Foundations of Knowledge
> Lecture 1: The Primacy of Existence
> Lecture 2: The Epistemology of Perception

> Lectures 3 and 4: Universals and Induction
> Lecture 5: Skepticism
> Lecture 6: The Nature of Free Will

David Kelley


David Kelley

David Kelley is the founder of The Atlas Society. A professional philosopher, teacher, and best-selling author, he has been a leading proponent of Objectivism for more than 25 years.