Volume 20

Credibility and the Standpoint Expectation

by Jessica Flanigan

When listeners consider a speaker’s social identity or standpoint as evidence of their credibility on questions related to social issues, this practice is usually epistemically counterproductive. Though people’s standpoints are relevant for understanding what it’s like to occupy a social position, the practice of boosting or blocking a speaker’s credibility on the basis of their standpoint is often misleading. The expectation that speakers will reveal their standpoints and that listeners will consider the speaker’s standpoints when evaluating their claims is also burdensome for speakers who would rather conceal information about their standpoints.


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