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Intentionalism and pain

Philosophical Quarterly 53 (213):502-523 (2003)

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  1. Enactive Pain and its Sociocultural Embeddedness.Katsunori Miyahara - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 20 (5):871-886.
    This paper disputes the theoretical assumptions of mainstream approaches in philosophy of pain, representationalism and imperativism, and advances an enactive approach as an alternative. It begins by identifying three shared assumptions in the mainstream approaches: the internalist assumption, the brain-body assumption, and the semantic assumption. It then articulates an alternative, enactive approach that considers pain as an embodied response to the situation. This approach entails the hypothesis of the sociocultural embeddedness of pain, which states against the brain-body assumption that the (...)
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  • An Adverbialist–Objectualist Account of Pain.Greg Janzen - 2013 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 12 (4):859-876.
    Adverbialism, broadly construed, is the thesis that pains (and other sensations) are modes of awareness, and objectualism, broadly construed, is the thesis that pains are objects of awareness. Why are we inclined to say that pains are modes of awareness and yet also inclined to say that they are objects of awareness? Each inclination leads to an account of pain that seems to be incompatible with the other. If adverbialism is correct, it would seem that objectualism is mistaken (and vice (...)
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  • Strong Representationalism and Bodily Sensations: Reliable Causal Covariance and Biological Function.Coninx Sabrina - 2021 - Philosophical Psychology 34 (2):210-232.
    Bodily sensations, such as pain, hunger, itches, or sexual feelings, are commonly characterized in terms of their phenomenal character. In order to account for this phenomenal character, many philosophers adopt strong representationalism. According to this view, bodily sensations are essentially and entirely determined by an intentional content related to particular conditions of the body. For example, pain would be nothing more than the representation of actual or potential tissue damage. In order to motivate and justify their view, strong representationalists often (...)
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  • ¿Es la conciencia fenoménica una condición necesaria para la intencionalidad? Limitaciones del inseparatismo fenomenalista.Asier Arias Domínguez - 2019 - Agora 38 (1).
    One of the main dividing lines within the debate on the problem of consciousness comes between representationalist separatism and phenomenalist inseparatism. According to the former, representational mental states are possible in the absence of phenomenal consciousness, and furthermore, an adequate naturalistic theory of representation is necessary and sufficient for the explanation of phenomenal consciousness. According to the later, phenomenal consciousness is necessary for the existence and the explanation of any representational state and, indeed, of any mental state. Several arguments have (...)
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  • The Imperative View of Pain.David Bain - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (9-10):164-85.
    Pain, crucially, is unpleasant and motivational. It can be awful; and it drives us to action, e.g. to take our weight off a sprained ankle. But what is the relationship between pain and those two features? And in virtue of what does pain have them? Addressing these questions, Colin Klein and Richard J. Hall have recently developed the idea that pains are, at least partly, experiential commands—to stop placing your weight on your ankle, for example. In this paper, I reject (...)
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  • Not Only a Messenger: Towards an Attitudinal‐Representational Theory of Pain.Hilla Jacobson - 2019 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (2):382-408.
    The main goal of this paper is to present a theory of the most salient aspect of the phenomenal character of pain – namely, the painfulness of pain or its negative affective quality. This task involves developing an account of the evaluative structure of pain, according to which painfulness is constituted by a frustrated conative attitude that is directed towards the bodily condition the obtaining of which the pain represents. The argument for the proposed Attitudinal-Representational Theory of Pain proceeds by (...)
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  • Representationalism About Consciousness.William E. Seager & David Bourget - 2007 - In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell. pp. 261-276.
    A representationalist-friendly introduction to representationalism which covers a number of central problems and objections.
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  • Revelation and the Nature of Colour.Keith Allen - 2011 - Dialectica 65 (2):153-176.
    According to naïve realist (or primitivist) theories of colour, colours are sui generis mind-independent properties. The question that I consider in this paper is the relationship of naïve realism to what Mark Johnston calls Revelation, the thesis that the essential nature of colour is fully revealed in a standard visual experience. In the first part of the paper, I argue that if naïve realism is true, then Revelation is false. In the second part of the paper, I defend naïve realism (...)
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  • Leibniz on Intellectual Pleasure, Perception of Perfection, and Power.Saja Parvizian - 2021 - Theoria 87 (3):600-627.
    Leibniz is unclear about the nature of pleasure. In some texts, he describes pleasure as a perception of perfection, while in other texts he describes pleasure as being caused by a perception of perfection. In this article, I disambiguate two senses of “perception of perfection”, which clarifies Leibniz’s considered position. I argue that pleasure is a perception of an increase in a substance’s power which is caused by a substance’s knowledge of a perfection of the universe or God. This reading (...)
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  • The Location of Pains.David Bain - 2007 - Philosophical Papers 36 (2):171-205.
    Perceptualists say that having a pain in a body part consists in perceiving the part as instantiating some property. I argue that perceptualism makes better sense of the connections between pain location and the experiences undergone by people in pain than three alternative accounts that dispense with perception. Turning to fellow perceptualists, I also reject ways in which David Armstrong and Michael Tye understand and motivate perceptualism, and I propose an alternative interpretation, one that vitiates a pair of objections—due to (...)
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  • Blur and interoceptive vision.Błażej Skrzypulec - 2021 - Philosophical Studies 178 (10):3271-3289.
    The paper presents a new philosophical theory of blurred vision according to which visual experiences have two types of content: exteroceptive content, characterizing external entities, and interoceptive content, characterizing the state of the visual system. In particular, it is claimed that blurriness-related phenomenology interoceptively presents acuity of vision in relation to eye focus. The proposed theory is consistent with the representationalist thesis that phenomenal character supervenes on representational content and with the strong transparency thesis formulated in terms of mind-independentness. Furthermore, (...)
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  • Affective Representation and Affective Attitudes.Jonathan Mitchell - 2019 - Synthese (4):1-28.
    Many philosophers have understood the representational dimension of affective states along the model of sense-perceptual experiences, even claiming the relevant affective experiences are perceptual experiences. This paper argues affective experiences involve a kind of personal level affective representation disanalogous from the representational character of perceptual experiences. The positive thesis is that affective representation is a non-transparent, non-sensory form of evaluative representation, whereby a felt valenced attitude represents the object of the experience as minimally good or bad, and one experiences that (...)
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  • Pain: Perception or Introspection?Murat Aydede - 2017 - In Jennifer Corns (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Pain. Routledge.
    [Penultimate draft] I present the perceptualist/representationalist theories of pain in broad outline and critically examine them in light of a competing view according to which awareness of pain is essentially introspective. I end the essay with a positive sketch of a naturalistic proposal according to which pain experiences are intentional but not fully representational. This proposal makes sense of locating pains in body parts as well as taking pains as subjective experiences.
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  • Blur.Keith Allen - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 162 (2):257-273.
    This paper presents an ‘over-representational’ account of blurred visual experiences. The basic idea is that blurred experiences provide too much, inconsistent, information about objects’ spatial boundaries, by representing them as simultaneously located at multiple locations. This account attempts to avoid problems with alternative accounts of blurred experience, according to which blur is a property of a visual field, a way of perceiving, a form of mis-representation, and a form of under-representation.
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  • Another Look at Mode Intentionalism.Jonathan Mitchell - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-28.
    A central claim in contemporary philosophy of mind is that the phenomenal character of experience is entirely determined by its content. In this paper, I consider an alternative I call Mode Intentionalism. According to this view, phenomenal character outruns content. It does so because the intentional mode contributes to the phenomenal character of the experience. Here I assess phenomenal contrast arguments in support of this view. I argue that the phenomenal contrast cases appealed to allow for interpretations which do not (...)
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  • Locating and Representing Pain.Simone Gozzano - 2019 - Philosophical Investigations 42 (4):313-332.
    Two views on the nature and location of pain are usually contrasted. According to the first, experientialism, pain is essentially an experience, and its bodily location is illusory. According to the second, perceptualism or representationalism, pain is a perceptual or representational state, and its location is to be traced to the part of the body in which pain is felt. Against this second view, the cases of phantom, referred and chronic pain have been marshalled: all these cases apparently show that (...)
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  • Husserl, Impure Intentionalism, and Sensory Awareness.Corijn Van Mazijk - 2018 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences:1-19.
    Recent philosophy of mind has seen an increase of interest in theories of intentionality in offering a functional account of mental states. The standard intentionalist view holds that mental states can be exhaustively accounted for in terms of their representational contents. An alternative view proposed by Tim Crane, called impure intentionalism, specifies mental states in terms of intentional content, mode, and object. This view is also suggested to hold for states of sensory awareness. This paper primarily develops an alternative to (...)
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  • Affect: Representationalists' Headache.Murat Aydede & Matthew Fulkerson - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 170 (2):175-198.
    Representationalism is the view that the phenomenal character of experiences is identical to their representational content of a certain sort. This view requires a strong transparency condition on phenomenally conscious experiences. We argue that affective qualities such as experienced pleasantness or unpleasantness are counter-examples to the transparency thesis and thus to the sort of representationalism that implies it.
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  • Pains and Sounds.Ivan V. Ivanov - 2011 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (9-10):143-163.
    I argue that an analogy between pains and sounds suggests a way to give an objective account of pain which fits well with a naïve perceptualist account of feeling pain. According to the proposed metaphysical account, pains are relational physical events with shared qualitative nature, each of which is constituted by tissue damage and the activation of nociceptors. I proceed to show that the metaphysical proposal is compatible with platitudes about pains being animate, private, and self-intimating states.
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  • Tracking Representationalism.David Bourget & Angela Mendelovici - 2014 - In Andrew Bailey (ed.), Philosophy of Mind: The Key Thinkers. Continuum. pp. 209-235.
    This paper overviews the current status of debates on tracking representationalism, the view that phenomenal consciousness is a matter of tracking features of one's environment in a certain way. We overview the main arguments for the view and the main objections and challenges it faces. We close with a discussion of alternative versions of representationalism that might overcome the shortcomings of tracking representationalism.
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  • Is the Experience of Pain Transparent? Introspecting Phenomenal Qualities.Murat Aydede - 2019 - Synthese 196 (2):677-708.
    I distinguish between two claims of transparency of experiences. One claim is weaker and supported by phenomenological evidence. This I call the transparency datum. Introspection of standard perceptual experiences as well as bodily sensations is consistent with, indeed supported by, the transparency datum. I formulate a stronger transparency thesis that is entailed by representationalism about experiential phenomenology. I point out some empirical consequences of strong transparency in the context of representationalism. I argue that pain experiences, as well as some other (...)
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  • What is a Pain in a Body Part?Murat Aydede - 2020 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 50 (2):143–158.
    The IASP definition of 'pain' defines pain as a subjective experience. The Note accompanying the definition emphasizes that as such pains are not to be identified with objective conditions of body parts (such as actual or potential tissue damage). Nevertheless, it goes on to state that a pain "is unquestionably a sensation in a part or parts of the body, but it is also always unpleasant and therefore also an emotional experience." This generates a puzzle that philosophers have been well (...)
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  • The Function of Pain.Laurenz C. Casser - 2020 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (2):364-378.
    Various prominent theories of pain assume that it is pain’s biological function to inform organisms about damage to their bodies. I argue that this is a mistake. First, there is no biological evidence to support the notion that pain was originally selected for its informative capacities, nor that it currently contributes to the fitness of organisms in this specific capacity. Second, neurological evidence indicates that modulating mechanisms in the nociceptive system systematically prevent pain from serving a primarily informative role. These (...)
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  • Spatial Content of Painful Sensations.Błażej Skrzypulec - forthcoming - Mind and Language.
    Philosophical considerations regarding experiential spatial content have focused on exteroceptive sensations presenting external entities, and not on interoceptive experiences that present states of our own body. A notable example is studies on interoceptive touch, in which it is argued that interoceptive tactile experiences have rich spatial content such that tactile sensations are experienced as located in a spatial field. This paper investigates whether a similarly rich spatial content can be attributed to experiences of acute, cutaneous pain. It is argued that (...)
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  • Pain.Murat Aydede - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    Pain is the most prominent member of a class of sensations known as bodily sensations, which includes itches, tickles, tingles, orgasms, and so on. Bodily sensations are typically attributed to bodily locations and appear to have features such as volume, intensity, duration, and so on, that are ordinarily attributed to physical objects or quantities. Yet these sensations are often thought to be logically private, subjective, self-intimating, and the source of incorrigible knowledge for those who have them. Hence there appear to (...)
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  • Intentionalism.Tim Crane - 2009 - In Brian McLaughlin & Ansgar Beckermann (eds.), The Oxford Handbook to the Philosophy of Mind. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 474-93.
    The central and defining characteristic of thoughts is that they have objects. The object of a thought is what the thought concerns, or what it is about. Since there cannot be thoughts which are not about anything, or which do not concern anything, there cannot be thoughts without objects. Mental states or events or processes which have objects in this sense are traditionally called ‘intentional,’ and ‘intentionality’ is for this reason the general term for this defining characteristic of thought. Under (...)
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  • Husserl, Impure Intentionalism, and Sensory Awareness.Corijn Van Mazijk - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (2):333-351.
    Recent philosophy of mind has seen an increase of interest in theories of intentionality in offering a functional account of mental states. The standard intentionalist view holds that mental states can be exhaustively accounted for in terms of their representational contents. An alternative view proposed by Tim Crane, called impure intentionalism, specifies mental states in terms of intentional content, mode, and object. This view is also suggested to hold for states of sensory awareness. This paper primarily develops an alternative to (...)
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  • Making Sense of Unpleasantness: Evaluationism and Shooting the Messenger.Paul Boswell - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (11):2969-2992.
    Unpleasant sensations possess a unique ability to make certain aversive actions seem reasonable to us. But what is it about these experiences that give them that ability? According to some recent evaluationist accounts, it is their representational content: unpleasant sensations represent a certain event as bad for one. Unfortunately evaluationism seems unable to make sense of our aversive behavior to the sensations themselves, for it appears to entail that taking a painkiller is akin to shooting the messenger, and is every (...)
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  • Pain, Pleasure, and Unpleasure.David Bain & Michael Brady - 2014 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 5 (1):1-14.
    Compare your pain when immersing your hand in freezing water and your pleasure when you taste your favourite wine. The relationship seems obvious. Your pain experience is unpleasant, aversive, negative, and bad. Your experience of the wine is pleasant, attractive, positive, and good. Pain and pleasure are straightforwardly opposites. Or that, at any rate, can seem beyond doubt, and to leave little more to be said. But, in fact, it is not beyond doubt. And, true or false, it leaves a (...)
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  • Mental Representation and Closely Conflated Topics.Angela Mendelovici - 2010 - Dissertation, Princeton University
    This dissertation argues that mental representation is identical to phenomenal consciousness, and everything else that appears to be both mental and a matter of representation is not genuine mental representation, but either in some way derived from mental representation, or a case of non-mental representation.
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  • Es Pot Naturalitzar la Intencionalitat?Marc Artiga - 2016 - Quaderns de Filosofia 3 (2).
    Intentionality is a central feature of our understanding of the world. We daily attribute intentional states (like beliefs, desires or perceptual states) to explain the behavior of other agents, and many theories appeal to them to understand more complex notions. Nonetheless, intentional states are puzzling entities. This article explains what intentionality is and why it is so important and problematic at the same time. Secondly, it examines various naturalistic theories, which seek to show that intentionality is compatible with a scientific (...)
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  • Posidonius on Emotions and Non-Conceptual Content.Bill Wringe - 2011 - Prolegomena 10 (2):185-213.
    In this paper I argue that the work of the unorthodox Stoic Posidonius - as reported to us by Galen - can be seen as making an interesting contribution to contemporary debates about the nature of emotion. Richard Sorabji has already argued that Posidonius' contribution highlights the weaknesses in some well-known contemporary forms of cognitivism. Here I argue that Posidonius might be seen as advocating a theory of the emotions which sees them as being, in at least some cases, two-level (...)
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  • Pain and Touch.Frédérique de Vignemont - 2017 - The Monist 100 (4):465-477.
    When one contrasts pain with the classic five senses, discussions generally focus on vision, which is taken as the paradigmatic example of perception. An intentionalist might argue that if the phenomenal difference between feeling and seeing bodily disturbances cannot be explained at the level of the content, it can be so at the level of the mode of presentation, and more particularly at the level of the structure of the spatial phenomenology of pain. Here I will argue that the spatial (...)
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