ABSTRACT. A normative constraint on theories about objects which we take to be real is explored: such theories are required to track the properties of the objects which they are theories of. Epistemic views in which observation (and generalizations of it) play a central role, and holist views which see epistemic virtues as applicable only to whole theories, are contrasted in the light of this constraint. It's argued that global-style epistemic virtues can't meet the constraint, although (certain) epistemic views within which observation (and, more generally, thick epistemic access) are centralized do meet it.



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