Shoemaker on qualia, phenomenal properties and spectrum inversions

Philosophia 34 (2):203-208 (2006)
Sydney Shoemaker offers an account of color perception that attempts to do justice, within a functionalist framework, to the commonsense view that colors are properties of ordinary objects, to the existence of qualia, and to the possibility of spectrum inversions. Shoemaker posits phenomenal properties as dispositional properties of colored objects that explain how there can be intersubjective variation in the experience of a particular color. I argue that his account does not in fact allow for the description of a spectrum inversion scenario, and that it cannot sustain a functionalist relationship between an object's color and its phenomenal properties. Functionalists must, however, come to terms with Shoemaker's recognition that intersubjective spectrum shifts are possible.
Keywords Color functionalism  Color objectivism  Sydney Shoemaker
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