The multidimensional spectrum of imagination: Images, Dreams, Hallucinations, and Active, Imaginative Perception.
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Humanities 3 (2):132-184 (2014)
A theory of the structure and cognitive function of the human imagination that attempts to do justice to traditional intuitions about its psychological centrality is developed, largely through a detailed critique of the theory propounded by Colin McGinn. Like McGinn, I eschew the highly deflationary views of imagination, common amongst analytical philosophers, that treat it either as a conceptually incoherent notion, or as psychologically trivial. However, McGinn fails to develop his alternative account satisfactorily because (following Reid, Wittgenstein and Sartre) he draws an excessively sharp, qualitative distinction between imagination and perception, and because of his flawed, empirically ungrounded conception of hallucination. His arguments in defense of these views are rebutted in detail, and the traditional, passive, Cartesian view of visual perception, upon which several of them implicitly rely, is criticized in the light of findings from recent cognitive science and neuroscience. It is also argued that the apparent intuitiveness of the passive view of visual perception is a result of mere historical contingency. An understanding of perception (informed by modern visual science) as an inherently active process enables us to unify our accounts of perception, mental imagery, dreaming, hallucination, creativity, and other aspects of imagination within a single coherent theoretical framework.
|Keywords||imagination mental imagery McGinn perception eye movements active vision enactive perception seeing as dreams hallucination|
|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
Cam Clayton (2012). The Psychical Analogon in Sartre's Theory of the Imagination. Sartre Studies International 17 (2):16-27.
Fred W. Mast (2005). Mental Images: Always Present, Never There. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (6):769-770.
Kevin Reuter (2010). Is Imagination Introspective? Philosophia 39 (1):31-38.
Jonathan Ichikawa (2009). Dreaming and Imagination. Mind and Language 24 (1):103-121.
Bence Nanay (2010). Perception and Imagination: Amodal Perception as Mental Imagery. Philosophical Studies 150 (2):239 - 254.
Robert N. Audi (1978). The Ontological Status of Mental Images. Inquiry 21 (1-4):348-61.
Nigel J. T. Thomas (2003). Imagining Minds. Journal of Consciousness Studies 10 (11):79-84.
Colin McGinn (2005). Mindsight: Image, Dram, Meaning. Harvard University Press.
Nigel J. T. Thomas (1999). Are Theories of Imagery Theories of Imagination? An Active Perception Approach to Conscious Mental Content. Cognitive Science 23 (2):207-245.
Added to index2010-02-20
Total downloads164 ( #7,010 of 1,696,461 )
Recent downloads (6 months)40 ( #6,622 of 1,696,461 )
How can I increase my downloads?