Phenomenal character and the myth of the given

In “Sellars and the ‘Myth of the Given,’” Alston argues against Sellars’s position in “Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind” (EPM) that there is no nonconceptual cognition. According to him, Sellars ignores phenomenal look-concepts that capture the phenomenal character of experience. I contend that the Sellarsian can agree that the phenomenal aspect of looks should be accommodated, but he is not thereby forced to concede a form of the nonconceptual Given. I examine some of Alston’s arguments, especially the Fineness of Grain Argument, for the view that the phenomenal character of experience is both nonconceptual and epistemic. I try to show that none of them can be said to have undermined Sellars’s position.
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DOI 10.5840/jpr_2006_9
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