Contents of Unconscious Color Perception

Review of Philosophy and Psychology 13 (3):665-681 (2022)
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In the contemporary discussions concerning unconscious perception it is not uncommon to postulate that content and phenomenal character are ‘orthogonal’, i.e., there is no type of content which is essentially conscious, but instead, every representational content can be either conscious or not. Furthermore, this is not merely treated as a thesis justified by theoretical investigations, but as supported by empirical considerations concerning the actual functioning of the human cognition. In this paper, I address unconscious color perception and argue for a negative thesis—that the main experimental paradigms used in studying unconscious color perception do not provide support for the position that conscious and unconscious color representations have the same type of content. More specifically, I claim that there is no significant support for the claim that unconscious vision categorically represents surface colors.

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Błażej Skrzypulec
Jagiellonian University


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