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Reference and Consciousness

Philosophical Quarterly 54 (214):191-194 (2002)

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  1. Transparency, Intentionalism, and the Nature of Perceptual Content.Jeff Speaks - 2009 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 79 (3):539-573.
    I argue that the transparency of experience provides the basis of arguments both for intentionalism -- understood as the view that there is a necessary connection between perceptual content and perceptual phenomenology -- and for the view that the contents of perceptual experiences are Russellian propositions. While each of these views is popular, there are apparent tensions between them, and some have thought that their combination is unstable. In the second half of the paper, I respond to these worries by (...)
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  • Either/Or.Alex Byrne & Heather Logue - 2008 - In Adrian Haddock & Fiona Macpherson (eds.), Disjunctivism: Perception, Action, Knowledge. Oxford University Press. pp. 314-19.
    This essay surveys the varieties of disjunctivism about perceptual experience. Disjunctivism comes in two main flavours, metaphysical and epistemological.
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  • What We Hear.Jason Leddington - 2014 - In Richard Brown (ed.), Consciousness Inside and Out: Phenomenology, Neuroscience, and the Nature of Experience. Springer Studies in Brain and Mind.
    A longstanding philosophical tradition holds that the primary objects of hearing are sounds rather than sound sources. In this case, we hear sound sources by—or in virtue of—hearing their sounds. This paper argues that, on the contrary, we have good reason to believe that the primary objects of hearing are sound sources, and that the relationship between a sound and its source is much like the relationship between a color and its bearer. Just as we see objects in seeing their (...)
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  • The Value of Perception.Keith Allen - forthcoming - Wiley: Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, EarlyView.
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  • Attention Is Amplification, Not Selection.Peter Fazekas & Bence Nanay - forthcoming - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:axy065.
    We argue that recent empirical findings and theoretical models shed new light on the nature of attention. According to the resulting amplification view, attentional phenomena can be unified at the neural level as the consequence of the amplification of certain input signals of attention-independent perceptual computations. This way of identifying the core realizer of attention evades standard criticisms often raised against sub-personal accounts of attention. Moreover, this approach also reframes our thinking about the function of attention by shifting the focus (...)
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  • Recollection, Perception, Imagination.Alex Byrne - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 148:15 - 26.
    Remembering a cat sleeping (specifically, recollecting the way the cat looked), perceiving (specifically, seeing) a cat sleeping, and imagining (specifically, visualizing) a cat sleeping are of course importantly different. Nonetheless, from the first-person perspective they are palpably alike. The paper addresses two questions: Q1. What are these similarities (and differences)? Q2. How does one tell that one is recalling (and so not perceiving or imagining)?
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  • Pointing and Representing: Three Options.Nick Young, Angelica Kaufmann & Bence Nanay - 2013 - Humana Mente 6 (24).
    The aim of this paper is to explore the minimal representational requirements for pointing. One year old children are capable of pointing – what does this tell us about their representational capacities? We analyse three options: (1) pointing presupposes non-perceptual representations, (2) pointing does not presuppose any representation at all, (3) pointing presupposes perceptual representations. Rather than fully endorsing any of these three options, the aim of the paper is to explore the advantages and disadvantages of each.
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  • Confusion is Corruptive Belief in False Identity.Elmar Unnsteinsson - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 46 (2):204-227.
    Speakers are confused about identity if they mistake one thing for two or two things for one. I present two plausible models of confusion, the Frege model and the Millikan model. I show how a prominent objection to Fregean models fails and argue that confusion consists in having false implicit beliefs involving the identity relation. Further, I argue that confused identity has characteristic corruptive effects on singular cognition and on the proper function of singular terms in linguistic communication.
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  • The Goldilocks Problem of the Specificity of Visual Phenomenal Content.Robert Schroer - 2014 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 44 (3-4):476-495.
    Existentialist accounts maintain that visual phenomenal content takes the logical form of an existentially quantified sentence. These accounts do not make phenomenal content specific enough. Singularist accounts posit a singular content in which the seen object is a constituent. These accounts make phenomenal content too specific. My account gets the specificity of visual phenomenal content just right. My account begins with John Searle's suggestion that visual experience represents an object as seen, moves this relation outside the scope of the existential (...)
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  • Naturalness as a Constraint on Priors.Darren Bradley - 2019 - Mind:0-27.
    I argue that epistemologists should borrow the metaphysician’s concept of naturalness and assign higher priors to more natural hypotheses.
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  • Mental Files.François Recanati - 2012 - Oxford University Press.
    Over the past fifty years the philosophy of language and mind has been dominated by a nondescriptivist approach to content and reference. This book attempts to recast and systematize that approach by offering an indexical model in terms of mental files. According to Recanati, we refer through mental files, the function of which is to store information derived through certain types of contextual relation the subject bears to objects in his or her environment. The reference of a file is determined (...)
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  • "Consciousness". Selected Bibliography 1970 - 2004.Thomas Metzinger - unknown
    This is a bibliography of books and articles on consciousness in philosophy, cognitive science, and neuroscience over the last 30 years. There are three main sections, devoted to monographs, edited collections of papers, and articles. The first two of these sections are each divided into three subsections containing books in each of the main areas of research. The third section is divided into 12 subsections, with 10 subject headings for philosophical articles along with two additional subsections for articles in cognitive (...)
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  • Audio-Visual Objects.Michael Kubovy & Michael Schutz - 2010 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 1 (1):41-61.
    In this paper we offer a theory of cross-modal objects. To begin, we discuss two kinds of linkages between vision and audition. The first is a duality. The the visual system detects and identifies surfaces ; the auditory system detects and identifies sources . Surfaces are illuminated by sources of light; sound is reflected off surfaces. However, the visual system discounts sources and the auditory system discounts surfaces. These and similar considerations lead to the Theory of Indispensable Attributes that states (...)
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  • On an Argument for Humility.Ann Whittle - 2006 - Philosophical Studies 130 (3):461-497.
    Considerations upon the nature of properties and laws have led some philosophers to claim that the correct epistemic attitude with regards to the intrinsic properties of particulars is scepticism. I examine one particularly clear version of this line of argument, and contend that a serious form of scepticism is not established. However, I argue that the theories of properties and laws underlying the argument have unwanted metaphysical implications. These provide a stronger reason to jettison the analyses. I end by sketching (...)
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  • Individuals: An Essay in Revisionary Metaphysics.Shamik Dasgupta - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 145 (1):35-67.
    We naturally think of the material world as being populated by a large number of individuals . These are things, such as my laptop and the particles that compose it, that we describe as being propertied and related in various ways when we describe the material world around us. In this paper I argue that, fundamentally speaking at least, there are no such things as material individuals. I then propose and defend an individual-less view of the material world I call (...)
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  • The Phenomenologically Manifest.Uriah Kriegel - 2007 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 6 (1-2):115-136.
    Disputes about what is phenomenologically manifest in conscious experience have a way of leading to deadlocks with remarkable immediacy. Disputants reach the foot-stomping stage of the dialectic more or less right after declaring their discordant views. It is this fact, I believe, that leads some to heterophenomenology and the like attempts to found Consciousness Studies on purely third-person grounds. In this paper, I explore the other possible reaction to this fact, namely, the articulation of methods for addressing phenomenological disputes. I (...)
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  • Which Immunity to Error?Joel Smith - 2006 - Philosophical Studies 130 (2):273-83.
    A self-ascription is a thought or sentence in which a predicate is self-consciously ascribed to oneself. Self-ascriptions are best expressed using the first-person pronoun. Mental self-ascriptions are ascriptions to oneself of mental predicates (predicates that designate mental properties), non-mental self-ascriptions are ascriptions to oneself of non-mental predicates (predicates that designate non-mental properties). It is often claimed that there is a range of self-ascriptions that are immune to error through misidentification relative to the first-person pronoun (IEM for short). What this means, (...)
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  • Negation, Anti-Realism, and the Denial Defence.Imogen Dickie - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 150 (2):161 - 185.
    Here is one argument against realism. (1) Realists are committed to the classical rules for negation. But (2) legitimate rules of inference must conserve evidence. And (3) the classical rules for negation do not conserve evidence. So (4) realism is wrong. Most realists reject 2. But it has recently been argued that if we allow denied sentences as premisses and conclusions in inferences we will be able to reject 3. And this new argument against 3 generates a new response to (...)
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  • Perception and its Objects.Bill Brewer - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 132 (1):87-97.
    Physical objects are such things as stones, tables, trees, people and other animals: the persisting macroscopic constituents of the world we live in. therefore expresses a commonsense commitment to physical realism: the persisting macroscopic constituents of the world we live in exist, and are as they are, quite independently of anyone.
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  • Editorial: Objects and Sound Perception. [REVIEW]Nicolas J. Bullot & Paul Égré - 2010 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 1 (1):5-17.
    Editorial: Objects and Sound Perception Content Type Journal Article Pages 5-17 DOI 10.1007/s13164-009-0006-3 Authors Nicolas J. Bullot, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales Centre de Recherches sur les Arts et le Langage (CRAL/CNRS) 96 Bd Raspail 75006 Paris France Paul Égré, Institut Jean-Nicod (ENS/EHESS/CNRS) Département d’Etudes Cognitives de l’ENS 29 rue d’Ulm 75005 Paris France Journal Review of Philosophy and Psychology Online ISSN 1878-5166 Print ISSN 1878-5158 Journal Volume Volume 1 Journal Issue Volume 1, Number 1.
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  • McDowell's Conceptualist Therapy for Skepticism.Santiago Echeverri - 2011 - European Journal of Philosophy 19 (3):357-386.
    Abstract: In Mind and World, McDowell conceives of the content of perceptual experiences as conceptual. This picture is supposed to provide a therapy for skepticism, by showing that empirical thinking is objectively and normatively constrained. The paper offers a reconstruction of McDowell's view and shows that the therapy fails. This claim is based on three arguments: 1) the identity conception of truth he exploits is unable to sustain the idea that perception-judgment transitions are normally truth conducing; 2) it could be (...)
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  • Is the Object Concept Formal?Roberto Casati - 2004 - Dialectica 58 (3):383–394.
    This review article explores several senses in which it can be held that the (actual, psychological) concept of an object is a formal concept, as opposed, here, to being a sortal concept. Some recent positions both from the philosophical and psychological literature are analyzed: Object-sortalism (Xu), quasi-sortalist reductive strategies (Bloom), qualified sortalism (Wiggins), demonstrative theories (Fodor), and anti-sortalism (Ayers).
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  • Consciousness-Dependence, and the Conscious/Unconscious Contrast. [REVIEW]Neil Manson - 2005 - Philosophical Studies 126 (1):115-129.
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  • Implications of Intensional Perceptual Ascriptions for Relationalism, Disjunctivism, and Representationalism About Perceptual Experience.David Bourget - 2019 - Erkenntnis 84 (2):381-408.
    This paper aims to shed new light on certain philosophical theories of perceptual experience by examining the semantics of perceptual ascriptions such as “Jones sees an apple.” I start with the assumption, recently defended elsewhere, that perceptual ascriptions lend themselves to intensional readings. In the first part of the paper, I defend three theses regarding such readings: I) intensional readings of perceptual ascriptions ascribe phenomenal properties, II) perceptual verbs are not ambiguous between intensional and extensional readings, and III) intensional perceptual (...)
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  • The Phenomenology of Action: A Conceptual Framework.Elisabeth Pacherie - 2008 - Cognition 107 (1):179 - 217.
    After a long period of neglect, the phenomenology of action has recently regained its place in the agenda of philosophers and scientists alike. The recent explosion of interest in the topic highlights its complexity. The purpose of this paper is to propose a conceptual framework allowing for a more precise characterization of the many facets of the phenomenology of agency, of how they are related and of their possible sources. The key assumption guiding this attempt is that the processes through (...)
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  • A Representationalist Reading of Kantian Intuitions.Ayoob Shahmoradi - forthcoming - Synthese:1-23.
    There are passages in Kant’s writings according to which empirical intuitions have to be (a) singular, (b) object-dependent, and (c) immediate. It has also been argued that empirical intuitions (d) are not truth-apt, and (e) need to provide the subject with a proof of the possibility of the cognized object. Having relied on one or another of the a-e constraints, the naïve realist readers of Kant have argued that it is not possible for empirical intuitions to be representations. Instead they (...)
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  • A Role for Abstractionism in a Direct Realist Foundationalism.Benjamin Bayer - 2011 - Synthese 180 (3):357-389.
    Both traditional and naturalistic epistemologists have long assumed that the examination of human psychology has no relevance to the prescriptive goal of traditional epistemology, that of providing first-person guidance in determining the truth. Contrary to both, I apply insights about the psychology of human perception and concept-formation to a very traditional epistemological project: the foundationalist approach to the epistemic regress problem. I argue that direct realism about perception can help solve the regress problem and support a foundationalist account of justification, (...)
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  • What is It Like to Think About Oneself? De Se Thought and Phenomenal Intentionality.Kyle Banick - 2019 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 18 (5):919-932.
    The topic of the paper is at the intersection of recent debates on de se thought and phenomenal intentionality. An interesting problem for phenomenal intentionality is the question of how to account for the intentional properties of de se thought-contents---i.e., thoughts about oneself as oneself. Here, I aim to describe and consider the significance of a phenomenological perspective on self-consciousness in its application to de se thought. I argue that having de se thoughts can be explained in terms of the (...)
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  • Feeling Pain for the Very First Time: The Normative Knowledge Argument.Guy Kahane - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 80 (1):20-49.
    In this paper I present a new argument against internalist theories of practical reason. My argument is inpired by Frank Jackson's celebrated Knowledge Argument. I ask what will happen when an agent experiences pain for the first time. Such an agent, I argue, will gain new normative knowledge that internalism cannot explain. This argument presents a similar difficulty for other subjectivist and constructivist theories of practical reason and value. I end by suggesting that some debates in meta-ethics and in the (...)
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  • Reference, Perception, and Attention.Athanasios Raftopoulos - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 144 (3):339 - 360.
    I examine John Campbell’s claim that the determination of the reference of a perceptual demonstrative requires conscious visual object-based selective attention. I argue that although Campbell’s claim to the effect that, first, a complex binding parameter is needed to establish the referent of a perceptual demonstrative, and, second, that this referent is determined independently of, and before, the application of sortals is correct, this binding parameter does not require object-based attention for its construction. If object-based attention were indeed required then (...)
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  • How Naïve Realism Can Explain Both the Particularity and the Generality of Experience.Craig French & Anil Gomes - 2019 - Philosophical Quarterly 69 (274):41-63.
    Visual experiences seem to exhibit phenomenological particularity: when you look at some object, it – that particular object – looks some way to you. But experiences exhibit generality too: when you look at a distinct but qualitatively identical object, things seem the same to you as they did in seeing the first object. Naïve realist accounts of visual experience have often been thought to have a problem with each of these observations. It has been claimed that naïve realist views cannot (...)
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  • Memory is a Modeling System.Sara Aronowitz - 2019 - Mind and Language 34 (4):483-502.
    This paper aims to reconfigure the place of memory in epistemology. I start by rethinking the problem that memory systems solve; rather than merely functioning to store information, I argue that the core function of any memory system is to support accurate and relevant retrieval. This way of specifying the function of memory has consequences for which structures and mechanisms make up a memory system. In brief, memory systems are modeling systems. This means that they generate, update and manage a (...)
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  • Naïve Realism and the Cognitive Penetrability of Perception.Dan Cavedon-Taylor - 2018 - Analytic Philosophy 59 (3):391-412.
    Perceptual experience has representational content. My argument for this claim is an inference to the best explanation. The explanandum is cognitive penetration. In cognitive penetration, perceptual experiences are either causally influenced, or else are partially constituted, by mental states that are representational, including: mental imagery, beliefs, concepts and memories. If perceptual experiences have representational content, then there is a background condition for cognitive penetration that renders the phenomenon prima facie intelligible. Naïve realist or purely relational accounts of perception leave cognitive (...)
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  • Everything is Clear: All Perceptual Experiences Are Transparent.Laura Gow - 2019 - European Journal of Philosophy 27 (2):412-425.
    The idea that perceptual experience is transparent is generally used by naïve realists and externalist representationalists to promote an externalist account of the metaphysics of perceptual experience. It is claimed that the phenomenal character of our perceptual experience can be explained solely with reference to the externally located objects and properties which (for the representationalist) we represent, or which (for the naïve realist) partly constitute our experience. Internalist qualia theorists deny this, and claim that the phenomenal character of our perceptual (...)
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  • In Defense of Perceptual Content.Susanna Schellenberg - 2017 - Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1):409-447.
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  • The Capacity to Know and Perception.Andrea Kern - 2019 - Philosophical Issues 29 (1):159-171.
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  • Spatial Perception: The Perspectival Aspect of Perception.E. J. Green & Susanna Schellenberg - 2017 - Philosophy Compass 13 (2):e12472.
    When we perceive an object, we perceive the object from a perspective. As a consequence of the perspectival nature of perception, when we perceive, say, a circular coin from different angles, there is a respect in which the coin looks circular throughout, but also a respect in which the coin's appearance changes. More generally, perception of shape and size properties has both a constant aspect—an aspect that remains stable across changes in perspective—and a perspectival aspect—an aspect that changes depending on (...)
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  • Attention and Mental Primer.Jacob Beck & Keith A. Schneider - 2017 - Mind and Language 32 (4):463-494.
    Drawing on the empirical premise that attention makes objects look more intense, Ned Block has argued for mental paint, a phenomenal residue that cannot be reduced to what is perceived or represented. If sound, Block's argument would undermine direct realism and representationism, two widely held views about the nature of conscious perception. We argue that Block's argument fails because the empirical premise it is based upon is false. Attending to an object alters its salience, but not its perceived intensity. We (...)
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  • The Value of Consciousness.Uriah Kriegel - 2019 - Analysis 79 (3):503-520.
    Recent work within such disparate research areas as the epistemology of perception, theories of well-being, animal and medical ethics, the philosophy of consciousness, and theories of understanding in philosophy of science and epistemology has featured disconnected discussions of what is arguably a single underlying question: What is the value of consciousness? The purpose of this paper is to review some of this work and place it within a unified theoretical framework that makes contributions (and contributors) from these disparate areas more (...)
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  • Attentive Visual Reference.E. J. Green - 2017 - Mind and Language 32 (1):3-38.
    Many have held that when a person visually attends to an object, her visual system deploys a representation that designates the object. Call the referential link between such representations and the objects they designate attentive visual reference. In this article I offer an account of attentive visual reference. I argue that the object representations deployed in visual attention—which I call attentive visual object representations —refer directly, and are akin to indexicals. Then I turn to the issue of how the reference (...)
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  • Perceptual Existentialism Sustained.Christopher S. Hill - forthcoming - Erkenntnis:1-20.
    There are two main accounts of what it is for external objects to be presented in visual experience. According to particularism, particular objects are built into the representational contents of experiences. Existentialism is a quite different view. According to existentialism, the representational contents of perceptual experiences are general rather than particular, in the sense that the contents can be fully captured by existentially quantified statements. The present paper is a defense of existentialism. It argues that existentialism is much better equipped (...)
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  • Egocentric Spatial Representation in Action and Perception.Robert Briscoe - 2009 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 79 (2):423-460.
    Neuropsychological findings used to motivate the "two visual systems" hypothesis have been taken to endanger a pair of widely accepted claims about spatial representation in conscious visual experience. The first is the claim that visual experience represents 3-D space around the perceiver using an egocentric frame of reference. The second is the claim that there is a constitutive link between the spatial contents of visual experience and the perceiver's bodily actions. In this paper, I review and assess three main sources (...)
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  • Kind Properties and the Metaphysics of Perception: Towards Impure Relationalism.Dan Cavedon-Taylor - 2015 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 96 (4):487-509.
    A central debate in contemporary philosophy of perception is between those who hold that perception is a detection relation of sensory awareness and those who hold that it is representational state akin to belief. Another key debate is between those who claim that we can perceive natural or artifactual kind properties, e.g. ‘being a tomato’, ‘being a doorknob’, etc. and those who hold we cannot. The current consensus is that these debates are entirely unrelated. I argue that this consensus is (...)
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  • Cognitivism, Significance and Singular Thought.Rachel Goodman - 2016 - Philosophical Quarterly 66 (263):236-260.
    This paper has a narrow and a broader target. The narrow target is a particular version of what I call the mental-files conception of singular thought, proposed by Robin Jeshion, and known as cognitivism. The broader target is the MFC in general. I give an argument against Jeshion's view, which gives us preliminary reason to reject the MFC more broadly. I argue Jeshion's theory of singular thought should be rejected because the central connection she makes between significance and singularity does (...)
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  • Is There a Perceptual Relation?Tim Crane - 2006 - In Tamar Szabó Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Perceptual Experiences. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 126-146.
    P.F. Strawson argued that ‘mature sensible experience (in general) presents itself as … an immediate consciousness of the existence of things outside us’ (1979: 97). He began his defence of this very natural idea by asking how someone might typically give a description of their current visual experience, and offered this example of such a description: ‘I see the red light of the setting sun filtering through the black and thickly clustered branches of the elms; I see the dappled deer (...)
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  • Why Naive Realism?Heather Logue - 2012 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 112 (2pt2):211-237.
    Much of the discussion of Naive Realism about veridical experience has focused on a consequence of adopting it—namely, disjunctivism about perceptual experience. However, the motivations for being a Naive Realist in the first place have received relatively little attention in the literature. In this paper, I will elaborate and defend the claim that Naive Realism provides the best account of the phenomenal character of veridical experience.
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  • Intentionalism and Perceptual Presence.Adam Pautz - 2007 - Philosophical Perspectives 21 (1):495-541.
    H. H. Price (1932) held that experience is essentially presentational. According to Price, when one has an experience of a tomato, nothing can be more certain than that there is something of which one is aware. Price claimed that the same applies to hallucination. In general, whenever one has a visual experience, there is something of which one is aware, according to Price. Call this thesis Item-Awareness.
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  • A Puzzle About Seeing for Representationalism.James Openshaw & Assaf Weksler - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-22.
    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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  • What Motivates Fregean Anti-Individualism?Johan Peter Gersel - 2017 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 94 (1-2):153-172.
    In Anti-Individualism and Knowledge Jessica Brown criticises views of content that combine Fregean Sense and anti-individualism. Brown assumes that all Fregean theories are motivated by a picture of the rational thinker as someone who will always have transparent access to the simple inferential consequences of his thoughts. This picture, Brown argues, is incompatible with anti-individualism about content. While traditional Fregean theories have indeed had such motivation, Brown’s mistake is in attributing this motivation to the modern Fregean anti-individualist. My goal in (...)
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  • The Way Things Look: A Defence of Content.Andrea Giananti - 2019 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 10 (3):541-562.
    How does perceptual experience disclose the world to our view? In the first introductory section, I set up a contrast between the representational and the purely relational conception of perceptual experience. In the second section, I discuss an argument given by Charles Travis against perceptual content. The third section is devoted to the phenomenon of perceptual constancy: in 3.1 I describe the phenomenon. In 3.2 I argue that the description given suggests a phenomenological distinction that can be deployed for a (...)
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