David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Essays in Philosophy 5 (1):1-23 (2004)
Our perception of external features comprises, among others, functional and phenomenological levels. At the functional level, the perceiver’s mind processes external features according to its own causal- functional organization. At the phenomenological level, the perceiver has consciousness of external features. The question of this paper is: How do the functional and the phenomenological levels of perception relate to each other? The answer I propose is that functional states of specifically perceptual attention constitute the necessary basis for the arising of consciousness in a perceiver. Widely studied within cognitive psychology, perceptual attention is still awaiting a thoroughgoing philosophical treatment. The paper presents and draws upon Anne Treisman’s feature-integration theory of attention (cf. A. Treisman & G. Gelade, “A Feature-Integration Theory of Attention,” Cognitive Psychology, 12, 1980. Pp. 97-136). According to this theory, attentional mechanisms are responsible for the binding of perceptual features into coherent and stable objects of perception. By itself, I will claim, the theory of feature integration does not allow a straightforward reduction of consciousness to the functional processing underlying it. However, on the basis of Treisman’s theory we can produce a methodological argument for endorsing the non-reductivist thesis that attentional states constitute the necessary basis for the arising of consciousness in a perceiver. The paper closes by presenting this argument, according to which the thesis is implied by a unified account of the common representational natures of attentional and conscious states.
|Keywords||Consciousness Epistemology Mind Perception Phenomenological|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Jim Pomerantz (2012). Emergent Features, Gestalts, and Feature Integration Theory. In Jeremy M. Wolfe & Lynn C. Robertson (eds.), From Perception to Consciousness: Searching with Anne Treisman. Oxford University Press. 187--192.
Susanna Siegel (2006). Direct Realism and Perceptual Consciousness. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 73 (2):378-410.
F. de Brigard (2010). Consciousness, Attention and Commonsense. Journal of Consciousness Studies 17 (9-10):189-201.
Benny Shanon (2008). A Psychological Theory of Consciousness. Journal of Consciousness Studies 15 (5):5-47.
Max Velmans (1999). When Perception Becomes Conscious. British Journal of Psychology 90 (4):543-566.
Jesse J. Prinz (2010). When is Perception Conscious? In Bence Nanay (ed.), Perceiving the World. Oxford University Press. 310--332.
Uriah Kriegel (2004). The Functional Role of Consciousness: A Phenomenological Approach. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 3 (2):171-93.
Carolyn Suchy-Dicey (2012). Inductive Parsimony and the Methodological Argument. Consciousness and Cognition 21 (2):605-609.
Brad J. Thompson (2010). The Spatial Content of Experience. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (1):146-184.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads43 ( #45,316 of 1,410,166 )
Recent downloads (6 months)3 ( #67,796 of 1,410,166 )
How can I increase my downloads?