World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Common knowledge

Article Id: WHEBN0005042367
Reproduction Date:

Title: Common knowledge  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Consensus reality, Behavior-based safety, Consensus, Open-loop model, Naïve physics
Collection: Consensus, Consensus Reality, Knowledge, Social Epistemology
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Common knowledge

Common knowledge is knowledge that is known by everyone or nearly everyone, usually with reference to the community in which the term is used. Common knowledge need not concern one specific subject, e.g., science or history. Rather, common knowledge can be about a broad range of subjects, such as science, literature, history, and entertainment. Often, common knowledge does not need to be cited. Common knowledge is distinct from general knowledge. The latter has been defined by differential psychologists as referring to "culturally valued knowledge communicated by a range of non-specialist media", and is considered an aspect of ability related to intelligence.[1] Therefore there are substantial individual differences in general knowledge as opposed to common knowledge.

The assertion that something is "common knowledge" is sometimes associated with the fallacy argumentum ad populum (Latin: "appeal to the people"). The fallacy essentially warns against assuming that just because everyone believes something is true, it is true. Misinformation is easily introduced into rumours by intermediate messengers.

Many techniques have been developed in response to the question of distinguishing truth from fact in matters that have become "common knowledge". The scientific method is usually applied in cases involving phenomena associated with astronomy, mathematics, physics, and the general laws of nature. In legal settings, rules of evidence generally exclude hearsay (which may draw on "facts" someone believes to be "common knowledge").

"Conventional wisdom" is a similar term also referring to ostensibly pervasive knowledge or analysis.

Contents

  • Examples 1
  • See also 2
  • Further reading 3
  • References 4

Examples

Examples of common knowledge:

  • "Paris is the capital of France." Many capital cities of countries are considered common knowledge by most people.
  • "The Moon orbits the Earth." Observation of the moon shows us that this happens. In addition, scientific findings give confirmation. At various periods in history, it was regarded as common knowledge that the Earth is flat and that the Sun orbits the Earth, although these theories were later found to be false.
  • "It is dangerous to mix ammonia and bleach." Though both common household chemicals, accidents involving the mixing of ammonia and bleach are rare, because the potentially lethal danger in their chemical reaction is a widely circulated cautionary tale.
  • "The Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution grants American citizens the right to refuse to answer any question in a court of law that would endanger incriminating themselves." "Pleading the Fifth" is a phrase commonly used in American colloquial speak, and even in such popular media as the sketch comedy series Chappelle's Show. Thus it may be regarded as common knowledge in the United States.

See also

Further reading

  • Cambria, E., Song, Y., Wang, H., Hussain, A. (2011) "Isanette: A Common and Common Sense Knowledge Base for Opinion Mining". Proceedings of ICDM11
  • R. Fagin, J. Y. Halpern, Y. Moses, and M. Y. Vardi. Reasoning about Knowledge, The MIT Press, 1995. ISBN 0-262-56200-6
  • Lewis, David. Convention: A philosophical study. Harvard University Press, 1969.
  • J-J Ch. Meyer and W van der Hoek Epistemic Logic for Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence, volume 41, Cambridge Tracts in Theoretical Computer Science, Cambridge University Press, 1995. ISBN 0-521-46014-X
  • Stalnaker, Robert. "Assertion". Pages 315–322 in P. Cole (ed.). Syntax and Semantics 9: Pragmatics, 1978.

References

  1. ^ Lynn, Richard; Irwing, P.; Cammock, T. (2001). "Sex differences in general knowledge". Intelligence 30: 27–39.  
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.