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Holding on to Extreme Beliefs – Lecture by Anne Meylan VU Amsterdam 02-09-22
Lecture by Anne Meylan at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam on the 2nd of June 2022, titled: Holding on to Extreme Beliefs.
When you heat water, the boiling point is a punctual state of the water. To believe that p is, most often, not to be in a punctual state. Usually, people maintain their beliefs for some (more or less long period of) time. Beliefs seem to be, in this way, quite inert. In my talk, I first intend to describe this inertness in more detail by relying, between other things, on the empirical literature. In the second part of my talk, I shall distinguish between two ways for a belief to stick: inert beliefs should be differentiated from beliefs to which we hold on. Most importantly, perhaps, while inert beliefs are maintained for epistemic reasons, we hold on to beliefs for practical ones. In this framework, I will also address the question of which kind of sticky beliefs are more suited to describe extreme beliefs.