How to think about higher‐level perceptual contents

Mind and Language 38 (5):1166-1186 (2023)
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The standard assumption for what perception must do in order to represent a “higher level” content—say, tiger—is that it must represent the kind as such. I argue that this “as such condition” is not constitutive of what it means for a content to be “higher‐level”, and that embracing it produces a range of unfortunate dialectical consequences. After offering this critique, I give an alternative construal, the “extended perceptual space” view of higher‐level contents. This view captures the phenomena targeted by the “higher‐level content” thesis, is empirically supported, and avoids the negative dialectical consequences of the as such condition.

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Daniel Burnston
Tulane University


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