Sensorimotor knowledge and the radical alternative

In A. Martin (ed.), Contemporary Sensorimotor Theory, Studies in Applied Philosophy, Epistemology and Rational Ethics. Springer Verlag. pp. 105-116 (2014)
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Abstract

Sensorimotor theory claims that what you do and what you know how to do constitutes your visual experience. Central to the theory is the claim that such experience depends on a special kind of knowledge or understanding. I assess this commitment to knowledge in the light of three objections to the theory: the empirical implausibility objection, the learning/post-learning objection and the causal-constitutive objection. I argue that although the theory can respond to the first two objections, its commitment to know-how ultimately renders it vulnerable to the third and arguably most serious objection. I then suggest that sensorimotor theory has two options: concede the causal-constitutive objection or challenge it. I shall argue for the latter. I will claim that a radical sensorimotor theory offers the best means of responding to this objection.

Author's Profile

Victor Loughlin
University of Antwerp

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