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  1. Physical Necessitism.Hasen Khudairi - manuscript
    This paper aims to provide two abductive considerations adducing in favor of the thesis of Necessitism in modal ontology. I demonstrate how instances of the Barcan formula can be witnessed, when the modal operators are interpreted 'naturally' -- i.e., as including geometric possibilities -- and the quantifiers in the formula range over a domain of natural, or concrete, entities and their contingently non-concrete analogues. I argue that, because there are considerations within physics and metaphysical inquiry which corroborate modal relationalist claims (...)
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  • Naïve Realism About Unconscious Perception.Paweł Zięba - 2019 - Synthese 196 (5):2045-2073.
    Recently, it has been objected that naïve realism is inconsistent with an empirically well-supported claim that mental states of the same fundamental kind as ordinary conscious seeing can occur unconsciously (SFK). The main aim of this paper is to establish the following conditional claim: if SFK turns out to be true, the naïve realist can and should accommodate it into her theory. Regarding the antecedent of this conditional, I suggest that empirical evidence renders SFK plausible but not obvious. For it (...)
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  • Epistemic Modality, Mind, and Mathematics.Hasen Khudairi - 2021 - Dissertation, University of St Andrews
    This book concerns the foundations of epistemic modality. I examine the nature of epistemic modality, when the modal operator is interpreted as concerning both apriority and conceivability, as well as states of knowledge and belief. The book demonstrates how epistemic modality relates to the computational theory of mind; metaphysical modality; the types of mathematical modality; to the epistemic status of large cardinal axioms, undecidable propositions, and abstraction principles in the philosophy of mathematics; to the modal profile of rational intuition; and (...)
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  • Selectionism and Diaphaneity.Paweł Jakub Zięba - forthcoming - Axiomathes:1-31.
    Brain activity determines which relations between objects in the environment are perceived as differences and similarities in colour, smell, sound, etc. According to selectionism, brain activity does not create those relations; it only selects which of them are perceptually available to the subject on a given occasion. In effect, selectionism entails that perceptual experience is diaphanous, i.e. that sameness and difference in the phenomenal character of experience is exhausted by sameness and difference in the perceived items. It has been argued (...)
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  • Commentary: The Concept of a Bewusstseinskultur.Sascha Benjamin Fink - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
    Thomas Metzinger has diagnosed the need for a Bewusstseinskultur, a ‘consciousness culture’: a culturally implemented way in which a society as a whole engages with the dawning natural science of consciousness, with phenomenal experiences themselves, and with our increasing capability to manipulate them. A Bewusstseinskultur is an achievement, built by a society-wide orientation on empirical evidence, thorough scientific theorizing and rational deliberation. It affects a broad range of issues from animal ethics, drug policy, end-of-life-care, and robo-ethics to post-humanism. However, this (...)
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  • Phenomenal Consciousness and Emergence: Eliminating the Explanatory Gap.Todd E. Feinberg & Jon Mallatt - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
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  • Seeing the Forest and the Trees: A Response to the Identity Crowding Debate.Adrienne Prettyman - 2018 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 7 (1):20-30.
    In cases of identity crowding, a subject consciously sees items in a figure, even though they are presented too closely together for her to shift attention to each item. Block uses such cases to challenge the view that attention is necessary for consciousness. I argue that in identity crowding cases, subjects really do attend to the items. Specifically, they attend to the figure as a global object that contains the individual items as parts. To support this view, I provide evidence (...)
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  • Can Representationism Explain How Attention Affects Appearances?Sebastian Watzl - 2019 - In Adam Pautz & Daniel Stoljar (eds.), Themes from Block. Boston, USA: The MIT Press. pp. 481-607.
    Recent psychological research shows that attention affects appearances. An “attended item looks bigger, faster, earlier, more saturated, stripier.” (Block 2010, p. 41). What is the significance of these findings? Ned Block has argued that they undermine representationism, roughly the view that the phenomenal character of perception is determined by its representational content. My first goal in this paper is to show that Block’s argument has the structure of a Problem of Arbitrary Phenomenal Variation and that it improves on other instances (...)
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  • Dretske on Non‐Epistemic Seeing.Erhan Demircioglu - 2017 - Theoria 83 (4):364-393.
    In this article, I make a distinction between two versions of non-epistemicism about seeing, and bring explicitly into view and argue against a particular version defended by Dretske. More specifically, I distinguish non-epistemic seeing as non-conceptual seeing, where concept possession is assumed to be cognitively demanding, from non-epistemic seeing as seeing without noticing, where noticing is assumed to be relatively cognitively undemanding. After showing that Dretske argues for the possibility of non-epistemic seeing in both senses of the term, I target (...)
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  • Are the States Underlying Implicit Biases Unconscious? – A Neo-Freudian Answer.Beate Krickel - 2018 - Philosophical Psychology 31 (6):1007-1026.
    Many philosophers as well as psychologists hold that implicit biases are due to unconscious attitudes. The justification for this unconscious-claim seems to be an inference to the best explanation of the mismatch between explicit and implicit attitudes, which is characteristic for implicit biases. The unconscious-claim has recently come under attack based on its inconsistency with empirical data. Instead, Gawronski et al. (2006) analyze implicit biases based on the so-called Associative-Propositional Evaluation (APE) model, according to which implicit attitudes are phenomenally conscious (...)
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  • Is the Grain of Vision Finer Than the Grain of Attention? Response to Block.J. H. Taylor - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):20-28.
    In many theories in contemporary philosophy of mind, attention is constitutively linked to phenomenal consciousness. Ned Block has recently argued that ‘identity crowding’ provides an example of subjects consciously seeing something to which they are unable to attend. Here I examine the reasons that Block gives for thinking that this is a case of a consciously perceived item that we are unable to attend to, and I offer a different interpretation.
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  • Problems of Empirical Solutions to the Theory-Ladenness of Observation.Themistoklis Pantazakos - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):12985-13007.
    Recent years have seen enticing empirical approaches to solving the epistemological problem of the theory-ladenness of observation. I group these approaches in two categories according to their method of choice: testing and refereeing. I argue that none deliver what friends of theory-neutrality want them to. Testing does not work because both evidence from cognitive neuroscience and perceptual pluralism independently invalidate the existence of a common observation core. Refereeing does not work because it treats theory-ladenness as a kind of superficial, removable (...)
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  • Identity-Crowding and Object-Seeing: A Reply to Block.Bradley Richards - 2013 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 2 (1):9-19.
    Contrary to Block's assertion, “identity-crowding” does not provide an interesting instance of object-seeing without object-attention. The successful judgments and unusual phenomenology of identity-crowding are better explained by unconscious perception and non-perceptual phenomenology associated with cognitive states. In identity-crowding, as in other cases of crowding, subjects see jumbled textures and cannot individuate the items contributing to those textures in the absence of attention. Block presents an attenuated sense in which identity-crowded items are seen, but this is irrelevant to the debate about (...)
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  • Does Conscious Seeing Have A Finer Grain Than Attention?Michael Tye - 2014 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (2):154-158.
    Ned Block says ‘yes’ (, ). His position is based on the phenomenon of identity-crowding. According to Block, in cases of identity-crowding, something is consciously seen even though one cannot attend to it. In taking this view, Block is opposing a position I have taken in recent work (Tye 2009a, 2009b, 2010). He is also contributing to a vigorous recent debate in the philosophy of mind over the relation, if any, between consciousness and attention. Who is right? Not surprisingly, I (...)
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  • Crowding, Attention and Consciousness: In Support of the Inference Hypothesis.Henry Taylor & Bilge Sayim - 2018 - Mind and Language 33 (1):17-33.
    One of the most important topics in current work on consciousness is what relationship it has to attention. Recently, one of the focuses of this debate has been on the phenomenon of identity crowding. Ned Block has claimed that identity crowding involves conscious perception of an object that we are unable to pay attention to. In this article, we draw upon a range of empirical findings to argue against Block's interpretation of the data. We also argue that current empirical evidence (...)
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  • The Defective Armchair: A Reply to Tye.Ned Block - 2014 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 3 (2):159-165.
    Michael Tye's response to my “Grain” (Block ) and “Windows” (Block ) raises general metaphilosophical issues about the value of intuitions and judgments about one's perceptions and the relations of those intuitions and judgments to empirical research, as well as specific philosophical issues about the relation between seeing, attention and de re thought. I will argue that Tye's appeal to what is (§. 2) “intuitively obvious, once we reflect upon these cases” (“intuition”) is problematic. I will also argue that first (...)
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  • Consciousness and Criterion: On Block's Case for Unconscious Seeing.Ian Phillips - 2016 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 93 (2):419-451.
    Block () highlights two experimental studies of neglect patients which, he contends, provide ‘dramatic evidence’ for unconscious seeing. In Block's hands this is the highly non-trivial thesis that seeing of the same fundamental kind as ordinary conscious seeing can occur outside of phenomenal consciousness. Block's case for it provides an excellent opportunity to consider a large body of research on clinical syndromes widely held to evidence unconscious perception. I begin by considering in detail the two studies of neglect to which (...)
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  • Modeling Mental Qualities.Andrew Y. Lee - 2021 - Philosophical Review 130 (2):263-209.
    Conscious experiences are characterized by mental qualities, such as those involved in seeing red, feeling pain, or smelling cinnamon. The standard framework for modeling mental qualities represents them via points in geometrical spaces, where distances between points inversely correspond to degrees of phenomenal similarity. This paper argues that the standard framework is structurally inadequate and develops a new framework that is more powerful and flexible. The core problem for the standard framework is that it cannot capture precision structure: for example, (...)
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  • Warrant From Transsaccadic Vision.Denis Buehler - 2021 - Mind and Language 36 (3):404-421.
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  • Phillips on Unconscious Perception and Overflow.Nicholas D’Aloisio-Montilla - 2019 - Philosophia 47 (3):649-662.
    Phillips argues that Block faces a “serious internal challenge” in defending the claim that unconscious perception is of the same fundamental kind as conscious perception. This challenge is said to result from Block’s commitment to phenomenal overflow. However, in this paper, I demonstrate that Phillips’ rejection of overflow likewise renders his view on unconscious perception “internally challenged” and therefore equally problematic.
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  • Forms of Luminosity.Hasen Khudairi - 2017
    This dissertation concerns the foundations of epistemic modality. I examine the nature of epistemic modality, when the modal operator is interpreted as concerning both apriority and conceivability, as well as states of knowledge and belief. The dissertation demonstrates how phenomenal consciousness and gradational possible-worlds models in Bayesian perceptual psychology relate to epistemic modal space. The dissertation demonstrates, then, how epistemic modality relates to the computational theory of mind; metaphysical modality; deontic modality; logical modality; the types of mathematical modality; to the (...)
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  • Breaking the Silence: Motion Silencing and Experience of Change.Ian Phillips - 2014 - Philosophical Studies 168 (3):693-707.
    The naïve view of temporal experience (Phillips, in: Lloyd D, Arstila V (eds) Subjective time: the philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience of temporality, forthcoming-a) comprises two claims. First, that we are perceptually aware of temporal properties, such as succession and change. Second, that for any temporal property apparently presented in experience, our experience itself possesses that temporal property. In his paper ‘Silencing the experience of change’ (forthcoming), Watzl argues that this second naïve inheritance thesis faces a novel counter-example in the form (...)
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  • Is Attention Both Necessary and Sufficient for Consciousness?Antonios Kaldas - 2019 - Dissertation, Macquarie University
    Is attention both necessary and sufficient for consciousness? Call this central question of this treatise, “Q.” We commonly have the experience of consciously paying attention to something, but is it possible to be conscious of something you are not attending to, or to attend to something of which you are not conscious? Where might we find examples of these? This treatise is a quest to find an answer to Q in two parts. Part I reviews the foundations upon which the (...)
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  • The Transparency of Experience and the Neuroscience of Attention.Assaf Weksler, Hilla Jacobson & Zohar Z. Bronfman - 2019 - Synthese 198 (5):4709-4730.
    According to the thesis of transparency, subjects can attend only to the representational content of perceptual experience, never to the intrinsic properties of experience that carry this representational content, i.e., to “mental paint.” So far, arguments for and against transparency were conducted from the armchair, relying mainly on introspective observations. In this paper, we argue in favor of transparency, relying on the cognitive neuroscience of attention. We present a trilemma to those who hold that attention can be directed to mental (...)
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  • Redundancy Masking and the Identity Crowding Debate.Henry Taylor & Bilge Sayim - 2020 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 9 (4):257-265.
    Thought: A Journal of Philosophy, EarlyView.
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  • Unconscious Perception Reconsidered.Ian Phillips - 2018 - Analytic Philosophy 59 (4):471-514.
    Most contemporary theorists regard the traditional thesis that perception is essentially conscious as just another armchair edict to be abandoned in the wake of empirical discovery. Here I reconsider this dramatic departure from tradition. My aim is not to recapture our prelapsarian confidence that perception is inevitably conscious (though much I say might be recruited to that cause). Instead, I want to problematize the now ubiquitous belief in unconscious perception. The paper divides into two parts. Part One is more purely (...)
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  • A Puzzle About Seeing for Representationalism.James Openshaw & Assaf Weksler - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (9):2625-2646.
    When characterizing the content of a subject’s perceptual experience, does their seeing an object entail that their visual experience represents it as being a certain way? If it does, are they thereby in a position to have perceptually-based thoughts about it? On one hand, representationalists are under pressure to answer these questions in the affirmative. On the other hand, it seems they cannot. This paper presents a puzzle to illustrate this tension within orthodox representationalism. We identify several interesting morals which (...)
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  • Emotions, concepts and the indeterminacy of natural kinds.Henry Taylor - 2020 - Synthese 197 (5):2073-2093.
    A central question for philosophical psychology is which mental faculties form natural kinds. There is hot debate over the kind status of faculties as diverse as consciousness, seeing, concepts, emotions, constancy and the senses. In this paper, I take emotions and concepts as my main focus, and argue that questions over the kind status of these faculties are complicated by the undeservedly overlooked fact that natural kinds are indeterminate in certain ways. I will show that indeterminacy issues have led to (...)
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  • Phenomenal Specificity.Tony Cheng - 2014 - Dissertation, University College London
    The essay is a study of phenomenal specificity. By ‘phenomenal’ here we mean conscious awareness, which needs to be cashed out in detail throughout the study. Intuitively, one dimension of phenomenology is along with specificity. For example it seems appropriate to say that one’s conscious awareness in the middle of the visual field is in some sense more specific than the awareness in the periphery under normal circumstances. However, it is difficult to characterise the nature of phenomenal specificity in an (...)
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  • Attention and Consciousness: A Comment on Watzl's Structuring Mind.Donnchadh O'Conaill - 2019 - Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 8 (4):303-312.
    Thought: A Journal of Philosophy, Volume 8, Issue 4, Page 303-312, December 2019.
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  • No-Report Paradigms: Extracting the True Neural Correlates of Consciousness.Naotsugu Tsuchiya, Melanie Wilke, Stefan Frässle & Victor A. F. Lamme - 2015 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 19 (12):757-770.
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  • Contextualism About Object-Seeing.Ben Phillips - 2016 - Philosophical Studies 173 (9):2377-2396.
    When is seeing part of an object enough to qualify as seeing the object itself? For instance, is seeing a cat’s tail enough to qualify as seeing the cat itself? I argue that whether a subject qualifies as seeing a given object varies with the context of the ascriber. Having made an initial case for the context-sensitivity of object-seeing, I then address the contention that it is merely a feature of the ordinary notion. I argue that the notions of object-seeing (...)
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