David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
It is one thing to have phenomenal states and another thing to think about phenomenal states. Thinking about phenomenal states gives us knowledge that we have them and knowledge of what they are like. But how do we think about phenomenal states? These days, the most popular answer is that we use phenomenal concepts. Phenomenal concepts are presumed to be concepts that represent phenomenal states in a special, intrinsically phenomenal, way. The special nature of phenomenal concepts is said to be important for defending materialism against epistemic arguments for dualism. In this paper I present an account of phenomenal knowledge that does not depend on phenomenal concepts. In fact, I argue that we have no phenomenal concepts. Instead my account appeals to mental pointing, a process that I explain in terms of phenomenal demonstratives. Phenomenal demonstratives are sometimes referred to as concepts in the literature, but I suggest that this is a mistake. I also present a theory of phenomenal demonstratives that equates them with attentional control structures in working memory. In a concluding section I describe how this theory can be used to defuse the knowledge argument for dualism. That is only a subsidiary goal, and my response to the knowledge argument echoes others in the literature. I think the project of developing a substantive, empirically informed theory of phenomenal knowledge has interest independent of debates about mental ontology. That is my central focus. Thinking about phenomenal knowledge can shed light on the relationship between consciousness, attention and memory. This paper has a philosophical agenda and an empirical agenda. Those who reject my philosophical claims about the nonexistence of phenomenal concepts, the conditions..
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
|Through your library||Only published papers are available at libraries|
Similar books and articles
Derek Ball (2009). There Are No Phenomenal Concepts. Mind 118 (472):935-962.
Diana I. Pérez (2011). Phenomenal Concepts, Color Experience, and Mary's Puzzle. Teorema (3):113-133.
Martina Fürst (2004). Qualia and Phenomenal Concepts as Basis of the Knowledge Argument. Acta Analytica 19 (32):143-152.
Katalin Balog (2008). Review of Torin Alter, Sven Walter (Eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2008 (5).
Bénédicte Veillet (2012). In Defense of Phenomenal Concepts. Philosophical Papers 41 (1):97-127.
David Papineau (2006). Phenomenal and Perceptual Concepts. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press. 111--144.
Stephen L. White (2006). Property Dualism, Phenomenal Concepts, and the Semantic Premise. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.
Pär Sundström (2011). Phenomenal Concepts. Philosophy Compass 6 (4):267-281.
Nicholas Shea (2013). Using Phenomenal Concepts to Explain Away the Intuition of Contingency. Philosophical Psychology:1-18.
Vincent Picciuto (2011). Addressing Higher-Order Misrepresentation with Quotational Thought. Journal of Consciousness Studies 18 (3-4):109-136.
Robert Schroer (2010). Where's the Beef? Phenomenal Concepts as Both Demonstrative and Substantial. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 88 (3):505-522.
Torin Alter, Introduction to Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism (Oup, 2007).
Joseph Levine (2006). Phenomenal Concepts and the Materialist Constraint. In Torin Alter & Sven Walter (eds.), Phenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal Knowledge: New Essays on Consciousness and Physicalism. Oxford University Press.
Martina Fürst (2011). What Mary's Aboutness Is About. Acta Analytica 26 (1):63-74.
Added to index2010-12-22
Total downloads74 ( #14,717 of 1,004,679 )
Recent downloads (6 months)2 ( #39,235 of 1,004,679 )
How can I increase my downloads?