Before summarizing Warrant: The Current Debate (henceforth WCD), it is helpful to understand, in broad outline, Plantinga’s Warrant trilogy as a whole. In WCD, Plantinga surveys various naturalistic versions of warrant and, by examining scenarios in which the conditions for warrant posited by a given theory of warrant are met but knowledge is still lacking, teases out what the missing ingredients are. In the next volume (Warrant and Proper Function) Plantinga fleshes out his proposed definition of warrant and examines its adequacy by applying it to a baker’s dozen of our cognitive faculties (including memory, perception, and testimony). Along the way he notes that several of the aspects of his version of warrant fit better with theism than with naturalism. In the final volume (Warranted Christian Belief) Plantinga examines the role of warrant in theistic belief in general and Christian belief in particular.
Plantinga notes that many modern versions of interalism exist, but that in the last few decades interest in various types of externalism has been growing. However, he thinks that this is not a discovery but rather a re-discovery.
Plantinga further notes that there is widespread agreement on a couple of things that knowledge presupposes: a belief that is true. There is also widespread agreement that more is required, however. For example, if Plantinga believes that he will win the Nobel Prize in question, and by happenstance that turns out to happen, it does not follow that he knew the belief. Rather, it seems more like a belief that turned out, by accident, to be true. This does seem intuitively correct. But then the question becomes: what property or properties (henceforth warrant) are such that, when added to true belief, yield knowledge?
Apologetics 315 Book Reviewer Latter Day Inkling is a U.S.-based research psychologist for the military. He is especially interested in epistemology and natural theology.