Perceptual Experience

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See my Embedded seeing-as: Multi-stable perception without interpretation unpublished manuscript and Searching for the duck: A situated account of aspect shifts unpublished manuscript , available upon request. Vision: A computational investigation into the human representation and processing of visual information , New York : Freeman. Obtaining a representation of objects, according to Marr, requires matching the visual percept with stored, and more complex, representations.

One can acquire the concept of a unicorn, for example, without ever perceptually encountering one. But it is undeniable that perceptual experience is one important way in which we get our concepts, and this is all that I am assuming in this paper. Skip to Main Content.

perceptual experience meaning - definition of perceptual experience by Mnemonic Dictionary

Search in: This Journal Anywhere. Advanced search. Journal Philosophical Psychology Volume 23, - Issue 6. Submit an article Journal homepage. Nicoletta Orlandi Correspondence nico rice.

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Pages Published online: 08 Dec Original Articles. Are sensory properties represented in perceptual experience? Article Metrics Views. Article metrics information Disclaimer for citing articles. People also read Article.

Perceptual Experience in Kant and German Idealism

Christopher Mole et al. Philosophical Psychology Volume 29, - Issue 3. Published online: 25 Sep More Share Options. However, if Power is right, there might be an extraordinary type of epistemic justifier of experience dependent upon the very nature of time itself notably, Power's avowed definition of "trustworthiness" does not include this commitment. This basis for perceptual experience needs empirical verification from physics. Unlike the a priori claim concerning phenomenal conservatism, the ultimate basis for perceptual justification rests on an empirical issue concerning the nature of time.

Although physicists struggle to account for the nature of time, spacetime is critical with respect to whether you should believe your eyes or not. But, as mentioned, Power says that one can eliminate hallucinations by appealing to his eternalist account. Go figure.

There are, of course, reasons to suspect that our perceptual experiences are not trustworthy. In order to resist skepticism one needs an epistemic theory, rather than speculations about spacetime. Grounding epistemic justification in how things appear, absent defeaters Huemer, , is a standard response to skepticism.

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art as perceptual experience

But this seems impossible on Power's view because such grounding depends on the truth of a highly theoretical account of time. In fact, it is not even clear what justificatory role appearances play, given that hallucinations are conceived as a form of ignorance combined with something that really "is there. A fundamental problem is that Power's view seems to get rid of defeaters by turning hallucinations into forms of anosognosia.

But no theory of perceptual experience makes sense without a treatment of epistemic defeaters.


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Appeals to the nature of spacetime will not help here. What requires explanation concerning time perception? Presumably the experience of time -- the commonsensical, believe your eyes, type of appearance. Not so, according to Power. Astonishingly, he admits on page that although "a tenseless theory ontology captures the phenomenology of perceptual experience better than a tensed or presentist ontology" there is one exception: the passage of time. How exactly, then, can a tenseless view capture the phenomenology of perceptual experience if temporal passage is unaccounted for?

Doesn't time seem to pass and doesn't perception seem to be framed within time's passage? Further explanation is required. If one focuses on how things appear, this analysis if one is willing to call it an analysis gets things entirely backwards. Callender , who offers an empirically grounded B-theoretic explanation of the phenomenon of passage, admits that the way things appear seems to favor the tensed view of time or A-theory.

It is, therefore, very difficult to understand what Power has in mind here. Before learning truths about tenseless time, and before thinking about ontology, we would surely have to begin with some basic perceptual experiences that have at least some justificatory status, in order to avoid rampant skepticism. Zimmermann , addresses this issue and shows how it favors presentism. Absent very powerful considerations, he argues, one must believe what is patently obvious, the most commonsensical and experientially basic truths that ground our actions and plans.

Otherwise we cannot get a hold on which perceptual beliefs must be accepted. And this, Zimmerman says, shows that the A-theory must be the default view unless we have very strong reasons to reject it, because it is supported by experience.


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This is the standard way to proceed, from perceptual justification to theoretical truths. Power proceeds in the opposite direction, by assuming theoretical truths while also appealing to how things appear. However, unlike Zimmerman, Power never explains the relation between his unorthodox view and skepticism.

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Given the topics he covers, it is remarkable that Power does not discuss this argument by Zimmerman and other presentists and A-theorists on how presentism best accommodates appearances. It is equally remarkable that he omits views that might be more in line with the idea that past experiences are real but inaccessible and against the notion that the experience of passage supports the A-theory, such as Skow This is an audacious book. It provides, as I hope to have shown, an unbalanced approach to the many issues it covers.

That time perception is related to the nature of time and that the phenomenology of experience is related to issues in the metaphysics of time are clear enough propositions to evaluate, although, contrary to Power's presentation, they are far from uncontroversial. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul. Jeshion, R. Singular thought: Acquaintance, semantic instrumentalism, and cognitivism. Jeshion Ed.

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Johnston, M. The obscure object of hallucination. Philosophical Studies, , — Kennedy, M. Heirs of nothing: The implications of transparency. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 79 , — Langsam, H. The theory of appearing defended. Philosophical Studies, 87 , 33— Martin, M. The reality of appearances.

Sainsbury Ed. Milano: Franco Angeli. The transparency of experience. Mind and Language, 17 , — The limits of self-awareness. Philosophical Studies, , 37— Millar, B. The phenomenological problem of perception. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.