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Peter Ross
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
  1. Color Science and Spectrum Inversion: A Reply to Nida-Rumelin.Peter W. Ross - 1999 - Consciousness and Cognition 8 (4):566-570.
    Martine Nida-Rümelin (1996) argues that color science indicates behaviorally undetectable spectrum inversion is possible and raises this possibility as an objection to functionalist accounts of visual states of color. I show that her argument does not rest solely on color science, but also on a philosophically controversial assumption, namely, that visual states of color supervene on physiological states. However, this assumption, on the part of philosophers or vision scientists, has the effect of simply ruling out certain versions of functionalism. While (...)
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  2. Primary and Secondary Qualties.Peter W. Ross - 2016 - In Mohan Matthen (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Perception. Oxford University Press. pp. 405-421.
    The understanding of the primary-secondary quality distinction has shifted focus from the mechanical philosophers’ proposal of primary qualities as explanatorily fundamental to current theorists’ proposal of secondary qualities as metaphysically perceiver dependent. The chapter critically examines this shift and current arguments to uphold the primary-secondary quality distinction on the basis of the perceiver dependence of color; one focus of the discussion is the role of qualia in these arguments. It then describes and criticizes reasons for characterizing color, smell, taste, sound, (...)
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  3. Existence Problems in Philosophy and Science.Peter W. Ross & Dale Turner - 2013 - Synthese 190 (18):4239-4259.
    We initially characterize what we’ll call existence problems as problems where there is evidence that a putative entity exists and this evidence is not easily dismissed; however, the evidence is not adequate to justify the claim that the entity exists, and in particular the entity hasn’t been detected. The putative entity is elusive. We then offer a strategy for determining whether an existence problem is philosophical or scientific. According to this strategy (1) existence problems are characterized in terms of causal (...)
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  4. Perceived Colors and Perceived Locations: A Problem for Color Subjectivism.Peter W. Ross - 2012 - American Philosophical Quarterly 49 (2):125-138.
    Color subjectivists claim that, despite appearances to the contrary, the world external to the mind is colorless. However, in giving an account of color perception, subjectivists about the nature of perceived color must address the nature of perceived spatial location as well. The argument here will be that subjectivists’ problems with coordinating the metaphysics of perceived color and perceived location render color perception implausibly mysterious. Consequently, some version of color realism, the view that colors are (physical, dispositional, functional, sui generis, (...)
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  5. Locating Color: Further Thoughts.Peter W. Ross - 2001 - Consciousness and Cognition 10 (1):146-156.
    "The Location Problem for Color Subjectivism" response to commentators.
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  6. Common Sense About Qualities and Senses.Peter W. Ross - 2008 - Philosophical Studies 138 (3):299 - 316.
    There has been some recent optimism that addressing the question of how we distinguish sensory modalities will help us consider whether there are limits on a scientific understanding of perceptual states. For example, Block has suggested that the way we distinguish sensory modalities indicates that perceptual states have qualia which at least resist scientific characterization. At another extreme, Keeley argues that our common-sense way of distinguishing the senses in terms of qualitative properties is misguided, and offers a scientific eliminativism about (...)
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  7. Fitting Color Into the Physical World.Peter W. Ross - 2010 - Philosophical Psychology 23 (5):575-599.
    I propose a strategy for a metaphysical reduction of perceived color, that is, an identification of perceived color with properties characterizable in non-qualitative terms. According to this strategy, a description of visual experience of color, which incorporates a description of the appearance of color, is a reference-fixing description. This strategy both takes color appearance seriously in its primary epistemic role and avoids rendering color as metaphysically mysterious. I’ll also argue that given this strategy, a plausible account of perceived color claims (...)
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  8. Empirical Constraints on the Problem of Free Will.Peter W. Ross - 2006 - In Susan Pockett, William P. Banks & Shaun Gallagher (eds.), Does Consciousness Cause Behavior? MIT Press. pp. 125-144.
    With the success of cognitive science's interdisciplinary approach to studying the mind, many theorists have taken up the strategy of appealing to science to address long standing disputes about metaphysics and the mind. In a recent case in point, philosophers and psychologists, including Robert Kane, Daniel C. Dennett, and Daniel M. Wegner, are exploring how science can be brought to bear on the debate about the problem of free will. I attempt to clarify the current debate by considering how empirical (...)
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  9. Phenomenal Externalism's Explanatory Power.Peter W. Ross - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (3):613-630.
    I argue that phenomenal externalism is preferable to phenomenal internalism on the basis of externalism's explanatory power with respect to qualitative character. I argue that external qualities, namely, external physical properties that are qualitative independent of consciousness, are necessary to explain qualitative character, and that phenomenal externalism is best understood as accepting external qualities while phenomenal internalism is best understood as rejecting them. I build support for the claim that external qualities are necessary to explain qualitative character on the basis (...)
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  10. Sensibility Theory and Conservative Complancency.Peter W. Ross & Dale Turner - 2005 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 86 (4):544–555.
    In Ruling Passions, Simon Blackburn contends that we should reject sensibility theory because it serves to support a conservative complacency. Blackburn's strategy is attractive in that it seeks to win this metaethical dispute – which ultimately stems from a deep disagreement over antireductionism – on the basis of an uncontroversial normative consideration. Therefore, Blackburn seems to offer an easy solution to an apparently intractable debate. We will show, however, that Blackburn's argument against sensibility theory does not succeed; it is no (...)
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  11.  97
    Spectrum Inversion.Peter W. Ross - forthcoming - In Derek Brown & Fiona Macpherson (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Colour. Routledge.
    This chapter examines the spectrum inversion hypothesis as an argument against certain kinds of account of what it’s like to be conscious of color. The hypothesis aims to provide a counterexample to accounts of what it’s like to be conscious of color in non-qualitative terms, as well as to accounts of what it’s like to be conscious of color in terms of the representational content of conscious visual states (which, according to some philosophers, is in turn given an account in (...)
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  12. Color Science and Spectrum Inversion: Further Thoughts.Peter W. Ross - 1999 - Consciousness and Cognition 8 (4):575-6.
    Martine Nida-Rümelin (1996) argues that color science indicates behaviorally undetectable spectrum inversion is possible and raises this possibility as an objection to functionalist accounts of visual states of color. I show that her argument does not rest solely on color science, but also on a philosophically controversial assumption, namely, that visual states of color supervene on physiological states. However, this assumption, on the part of philosophers or vision scientists, has the effect of simply ruling out certain versions of functionalism. While (...)
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