Human Knowledge and Human Nature (1992) Peter Carruthers
Contemporary debates in epistemology devote much attention to the nature of knowledge, but neglect the question of its sources. This book focuses on the latter, especially on the question of innateness. Carruthers' aim is to transform and reinvigorate contemporary empiricism, while also providing an introduction to a range of issues in the theory of knowledge. He gives a lively presentation and assessment of the claims of classical empiricism, particularly its denial of substantive a priori knowledge and of innate knowledge. He argues that we would be right to reject the substantive a priori but not innateness, and then presents a novel account of the main motivation behind empiricism, which leaves contemporary empiricists free to accept innate knowledge and concepts. Carruthers closes with a discussion of scepticism, arguing that acceptance of innate concepts may lead to a decisive resolution of the problem in favor of realism. Oxford University Press.