Understanding the embodiment of perception

Journal of Philosophy 104 (1):5-25 (2007)
Obviously perception is embodied. After all, if creatures were entirely disembodied, how could physical processes in the environment, such as the propagation of light or sound, be transduced into a neurobiological currency capable of generating experience? Is there, however, any deeper, more subtle sense in which perception is embodied? Perhaps. Alva Noë’s theory of en- active perception provides one proposal. Noë suggests a radical constitutive hypothesis according to which (COH) Perceptual experiences are constituted, in part, by the exercise of sensorimotor skills. On Noé's view, bodily processes form a constitutive element in per- ceptual experiences. By contrast, it is more commonly supposed that bodily processes have at most a causal role to play in the genesis of perceptual experiences. Roughly stated, (CAI-l} Perceptual experiences are caused, in part, by the exercise of sensorimotor skills. Clearly these two hypotheses offer distinct conceptions of the embodiment of perception. One view maintains that there is a con- stitutive dependency between bodily processes and perceptual expe- riences, where the other maintains that there is a causal dependency. This paper will make the case that Noe fails to offer any evidence that. supports (COH) over (CAH) and that there is experimental evidence that favours (CAH) over (COH).E
Keywords Perception  Action  Constitutive
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DOI 10.5840/jphil2007104135
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Mark Sprevak (2010). Inference to the Hypothesis of Extended Cognition. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 41 (4):353-362.

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