A Feeling of Evidence

A Neo-Kantian Proposal for an Open-Minded Use of Intuitions

  • Francesco Pisano University of Florence
Keywords: Intuition, Open-mindedness, Phenomenology, Christoph Sigwart, Feeling, Evidence, Psychologism, Epistemology


Intuitions play a relevant role in the acquisition of knowledge. Among those who believe that this is the case, some base their claim on the peculiar phenomenology of intuitions. These theorists often adopt a perceptualist and seeming-based model for their phenomenological description. Deeming intuitions as essentially private phenomena, however, seeming-based descriptions end up supporting a dogmatic view of intuitions as a source of epistemic justifications. I argue that this is because the seeming-based model is incomplete in that it does not consider some virtue-related aspects of the plasticity of intuitions in social contexts. Then, I propose a way of integrating an explanation of these aspects in it through a Neo-Kantian reinterpretation of some of the concepts involved. I will draw from the work of Christoph Sigwart on the so-called Evidenzgefühl (“feeling of evidence”) that characterizes the phenomenology of intuitions, showing the ties between this feeling and the linguistic, communicative, and social dimension of scientific research. The broader aim is to suggest that it is possible to make an open-minded use of intuitions even when basing their epistemic relevance on their peculiar phenomenology.

How to Cite
Pisano, F. (2021). A Feeling of Evidence. HUMANA.MENTE Journal of Philosophical Studies, 14(39), 47-67. Retrieved from https://www.humanamente.eu/index.php/HM/article/view/357