Thought about Properties: Why the Perceptual Case is Basic

Philosophical Quarterly 68 (271):221-242 (2018)
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This paper defends a version of the old empiricist claim that to think about unobservable physical properties a subject must be able to think perception-based thoughts about observable properties. The central argument builds upon foundations laid down by G. E. M. Anscombe and P. F. Strawson. It bridges the gap separating these foundations and the target claim by exploiting a neglected connection between thought about properties and our grasp of causation. This way of bridging the gap promises to introduce substantive constraints on right accounts of perception and perception-based thought.
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