On Silhouettes, Surfaces and Sorensen

In Clare Mac Cumhaill & Thomas Crowther (eds.), Perceptual Ephemera. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 194-218 (2018)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
In his book “Seeing Dark Things” (2008), Roy Sorensen provides many wonderfully ingenious arguments for many surprising, counter-intuitive claims. One such claim in particular is that when we a silhouetted object – i.e. an opaque object lit entirely from behind – we literally see its back-side – i.e. we see the full expanse of the surface facing away from us that is blocking the incoming light. Sorensen himself admits that this seems a tough pill to swallow, later characterising it as “the most controversial thesis of the book” (2011, p199). I will argue against Sorensen’s controversial thesis and in favour of what seems to me to be a much more natural and commonsensical alternative: when we see a silhouetted object, what we see is its edge and only its edge – so we do not see its entire back-side.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
RALOSS
Revision history
Archival date: 2018-06-08
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index
2018-06-08

Total views
20 ( #34,060 of 37,244 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
9 ( #27,663 of 37,244 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.