David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In Edward Craig (ed.), The Encyclopdia of Philosophy. Routledge (1998)
The world as perceived by human beings is full of colour. The world as described by physical scientists is composed of colourless particles and fields. Philosophical theories of colour since the scientific revolution have been primarily driven by a desire to harmonize these two apparently conflicting pictures of the world. Any adequate theory of colour has to be consistent with the characteristics of colour as perceived without contradicting the deliverances of the physical sciences. Given this conception of the aim of a theory of colour, there are three possibilities for resolving the apparent conflict between the scientific and perceptual facts. The first possibility is to deny that physical objects have colours. Theories of this kind admit that objects appear coloured but maintain that these appearances are misleading. The conflict is resolved by removing colour from the external world. Second, it might be that colour is a relational property. For an object to possess a particular colour it must be related in the right way to a perceiver. One common version of this view analyzes colour as a disposition to cause particular kinds of perceptual experiences in a human being. Since the physical sciences deal only with the intrinsic properties of physical objects and their relations to other physical objects and not their relations to perceiving subjects, the possibility of conflict is removed. A third possible response to the conflict is to maintain that colour really is a property of external objects and that the conflict is merely apparent. Some theories of this form maintain that colour is identical to a physical property of objects. Others maintain that colour is a property that physical objects possess over and above all their physical <blockquote> 1 </blockquote> properties. Philosophical discussions of colour typically take the form of either elaborating on one of these three possibilities or attempting to show more generally that one of these three types of responses is to be preferred to the others..
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|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
Russell Wahl & Jonathan Westphal (1998). Colour: Physical or Phenomenal? Philosophy 73 (284):301-304.
Frank Jackson (2003). Color and Content. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 26 (1):34-34.
Rainer Mausfeld & Dieter Heyer (eds.) (2003). Colour Perception: Mind and the Physical World. Oxford University Press.
Jonathan Ellis (2005). Colour Irrealism and the Formation of Colour Concepts. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83 (1):53-73.
Adam Pautz (2006). Can the Physicalist Explain Colour Structure in Terms of Colour Experience? Australasian Journal of Philosophy 84 (4):535 – 564.
Ralph Schumacher (2007). Guest Editor's Introduction. Erkenntnis 66 (1-2):1-8.
John Morrison (2012). Colour in a Physical World: A Problem Due to Visual Noise. Mind 121 (482):333-373.
Ralph Schumacher (2007). Do We Have to Be Realists About Colour in Order to Be Able to Attribute Colour Perceptions to Other Persons? Erkenntnis 66 (1-2):233 - 246.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads75 ( #26,824 of 1,696,306 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #77,991 of 1,696,306 )
How can I increase my downloads?