Visual Acquaintance, Action & The Explanatory Gap

Synthese:1-26 (forthcoming)
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Abstract
Much attention has recently been paid to the idea, which I label ‘External World Acquaintance’ (EWA), that the phenomenal character of perceptual experience is partially constituted by external features. One motivation for EWA which has received relatively little discussion is its alleged ability to help deal with the ‘Explanatory Gap’ (e.g. Fish 2008, 2009, Langsam 2011, Allen 2016). I provide a reformulation of this general line of thought, which makes clearer how and when EWA could help to explain the specific phenomenal nature of visual experience. In particular, I argue that by focusing on the different kinds of perceptual actions that are available in the case of visual spatial vs. colour perception, we get a natural explanation for why we should expect the specific nature of colour phenomenology to remain less readily intelligible than the specific nature of visual spatial phenomenology.
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Archival date: 2018-08-09
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2018-08-09

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