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  1. Austen Clark, Location, Location, Location.
    Forthcoming in Lana Trick & Don Dedrick (eds.), Cognition, Computation, and Pylyshyn. MIT Press. Presented at the Zenon Pylyshyn Conference (ZenCon), University of Guelph, 1 May 2005.
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  2. Austen Clark, Preattentive Precursors to Phenomenal Properties.
    What are the relations between preattentive feature-placing and states of perceptual awareness? For the purposes of this paper, states of "perceptual awareness" are confined to the simplest possible exemplars: states in which one is aware of some aspect of the appearance of something one perceives. Subjective contours are used as an example. Early visual processing seems to employ independent, high-bandwidth, preattentive feature "channels", followed by a selective process that directs selective attention. The mechanisms that yield subjective contours are found very (...)
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  3. Austen Clark, Comments on Bill Lycan, "More Layers of Perceptual Content&Quot.
    I'm very happy here to be sandwiched between Lycan and Millikan, two of the living philosophers from whom I've probably learned the most, and to whom I am the most grateful. Plus the intermediary position is appropriate for someone commenting on intermediary representations in vision. There's much to like in Bill's account of "layering" in visual representation. For one, it makes explicit and publicizes the notion that there are multiple layers of representation involved even in the seemingly simple achievement (...)
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  4. Austen Clark & Manchester Hall, Attention & Inscrutability.
    We assemble here in this time and place to discuss the thesis that conscious attention can provide knowledge of reference of perceptual demonstratives. I shall focus my commentary on what this claim means, and on the main argument for it found in the first five chapters of Reference and Consciousness. The middle term of that argument is an account of what attention does: what its job or function is. There is much that is admirable in this account, and I am (...)
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  5. Austen Clark & Manchester Hall, March 2004.
    We assemble here in this time and place to discuss the thesis that conscious attention can provide knowledge of reference of perceptual demonstratives. I shall focus my commentary on what this claim means, and on the main argument for it found in the first five chapters of Reference and Consciousness. The middle term of that argument is an account of what attention does: what its job or function is. There is much that is admirable in this account, and I am (...)
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  6. Austen Clark & Manchester Hall, Vicissitudes of Consciousness, Varieties of Correlates.
    If, as Ned Block has argued, consciousness is a mongrel concept, then this collection resembles nothing so much as a visit to a dog pound, where one can hear all the varieties baying, at full volume. The experience is one of immersion in a voluminous excited cacophony, with much yipping and barking, some deep-throated growling, and other voices that can only be characterized as howling at the moon. What a time to be conscious! What a time to be conscious of (...)
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  7. Austen Clark, How Do Feature Maps Represent?
    Three different ways to understand the representational content of the feature maps employed in early vision are compared. First is Stephen Kosslyn's claim, entered as part of the debate over mental imagery, that such areas support "depictive" representation, and that visual perception uses them as depictive representations. Reasons are given to doubt this view. Second, an improved version of what I call "feature-placing" is described and advanced. Third, feature-placing is contrasted with the notion that the representational content of those feature (...)
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  8. Austen Clark, Inversions Spectral and Bright.
    Spectrum inversion is a thought experiment, and I would wager that there is no better diagnostic test to the disciplinary affiliation of a randomly selected member of the audience than your reaction to a thought experiment. It is a litmus test. If you find that you are paying close attention, subvocalizing objections, and that your heart-rate and metabolism go up, you have turned pink: you are a philosopher. If on the other hand the thought experiment leaves you cold, and you (...)
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  9. Austen Clark, Perception Preattentive and Phenomenal.
    Recent work in experimental psychology and neuroscience has revealed a rather surprising architecture for early (or preattentive) perceptual processes. This paper will describe some of the surprising features of that architecture, and how they bear on recent philosophical debates about the notion of phenomenal consciousness. I will argue that the common sense idea that states of phenomenal consciousness are states of a unitary kind cannot survive confrontation with the details of how our early perceptual processing works. In particular, that architecture (...)
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  10. Austen Clark, Review of Martha Farah, Visual Agnosia. [REVIEW]
    Common sense says that visual agnosia is impossible. It ought not exist. If an object like a safety pin or a bar of white soap is in full view, you see it, and you know what a "safety pin" or a "bar of soap" is, then you cannot fail to recognize what you see. If you identify the safety pin as "something silver and shiny like a watch or a nail clipper," or you identify the bar of white soap as (...)
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  11. Austen Clark, Reductionism & Subjectivism Defined & Defended.
    As a reductionist and a subjectivist I find little to dispute, and much to cheer, in the use of the comparative argument against objectivism. The best available form of objectivism is anthropocentric realism, and at the very least the comparative argument dispels much of the..
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  12. Austen Clark (forthcoming). Vicissitudes of Consciousness, Varieties of Correlates: Review of The Neural Correlates of Consciousness: Empirical and Conceptual Questions. [REVIEW] American Journal of Psychology.
    and denotes a number of different phenomena. We reason about “consciousness” using some premises that apply to one of the..
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  13. Austen Clark (2012). Spatial Organization and the Appearances Thereof in Early Vision. In Gary Hatfield & Sarah Allred (eds.), Visual Experience: Sensation, Cognition, and Constancy. Oup Oxford. 135.
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  14. Austen Clark (2011). Cross-Modal Cuing and Selective Attention. In Fiona Macpherson (ed.), The Senses: Classic and Contemporary Philosophical Perspectives. Oxford University Press, Usa. 375.
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  15. Austen Clark (2011). Vicissitudes of Non-Visual Objects: Comments on Macpherson, O'Callaghan, and Batty. Philosophical Studies 153 (1):175 - 181.
    The papers by Macpherson, O'Callaghan, and Batty reveal some startling differences in the objects and properties represented by different modalities. They also reveal some tensions between different ways of understanding what it is for any one modality to represent objects and properties.
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  16. Austen Clark (2010). Color, Qualia, and Attention : A Non-Standard Interpretation. In Jonathan D. Cohen & Mohan Matthen (eds.), Color Ontology and Color Science. Mit Press. 203.
    A standard view in philosophy of mind is that qualia and phenomenal character require consciousness. This paper argues that various experimental and clinical phenomena can be better explained if we reject this assumption. States found in early visual processing can possess qualitative character even though they are not in any sense conscious mental states. This non-standard interpretation bears the burden of explaining what must be added to states that have qualitative character in order to yield states of sensory awareness or (...)
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  17. Austen Clark (2008). Classes of Sensory Classification: A Commentary on Mohan Matthen, "Seeing, Doing, and Knowing". [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (2):400 - 406.
    Forthcoming in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 2008, A book symposium commentary on Mohan Matthen’s Seeing, Doing, and Knowing.
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  18. Austen Clark (2008). Classes of Sensory Classification: A Commentary on Mohan Matthen, Seeing, Doing, and Knowing. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (2):400–406.
    Sensory classification is a central theme of Mohan Matthen's wonderful book, Seeing, Doing, and Knowing. ( All page references are to Matthen 2005 unless otherwise indicated.) My plan for this commentary is simple: I shall list a series of claims that Matthen makes about the classes involved in sensory classification. Each member of the series is admirable, and seems credible on its own. The question at the end is whether we can hold them all, together.
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  19. Austen Clark (2008). Phenomenal Properties: Some Models From Psychology and Philosophy. Philosophical Issues 18 (1):406-425.
    Forthcoming in Philosophical Issues, vol 18, Interdisciplinary Core Philosophy: The Metaphysics and Perception of Qualities. Alex Byrne & David Hilbert, section editors.
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  20. Austen Clark (2007). Sensory and Perceptual Consciousness. In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell.
    Asked on the Dick Cavett show about her former Stalinist comrade Lillian Hellman, Mary McCarthy replied, "Every word she says is a lie, including 'and' and 'the'." The language used to describe sensory and perceptual consciousness is worthy of about the same level of trust. One must adapt oneself to the fact that every ordinary word used to describe this domain is ambiguous; that different theoreticians use the same words in very different ways; and that every speaker naturally thinks that (...)
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  21. Austen Clark (2006). Attention and Inscrutability: A Commentary on John Campbell, Reference and Consciousness. Philosophical Studies 127:167-193.
  22. Austen Clark (2006). Attention & Inscrutability: A Commentary on John Campbell, Reference and Consciousness for the Pacific APA Meeting, Pasadena, California, 2004. Philosophical Studies 127 (2):167-193.
    We assemble here in this time and place to discuss the thesis that conscious attention can provide knowledge of reference of perceptual demonstratives. I shall focus my commentary on what this claim means, and on the main argument for it found in the first five chapters of Reference and Consciousness. The middle term of that argument is an account of what attention does: what its job or function is. There is much that is admirable in this account, and I am (...)
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  23. Austen Clark (2006). Attention & Inscrutability: A Commentary on John Campbell, for the Pacific APA Meeting, Pasadena, California, 2004. Philosophical Studies 127 (2):167-193.
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  24. Austen Clark (2005). Painfulness is Not a Quale. In Murat Aydede (ed.), Pain: New Essays on its Nature and the Methodology of its Study. Cambridge Ma: Bradford Book/Mit Press.
    When you suffer a pain are you suffering a sensation? An emotion? An aversion? Pain typically has all three components, and others too. There is indeed a distinct sensory system devoted to pain, with its own nociceptors and pathways. As a species of somesthesis, pain has a distinctive sensory organization and its own special sensory qualities. I think it is fair to call it a distinct sensory modality, devoted to nociceptive somesthetic discrimination. But the typical pain kicks off other processes (...)
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  25. Austen Clark (2004). Feature-Placing and Proto-Objects. Philosophical Psychology 17 (4):443-469.
    This paper contrasts three different schemes of reference relevant to understanding systems of perceptual representation: a location-based system dubbed "feature-placing", a system of "visual indices" referring to things called "proto-objects", and the full sortal-based individuation allowed by a natural language. The first three sections summarize some of the key arguments (in Clark, 2000) to the effect that the early, parallel, and pre-attentive registration of sensory features itself constitutes a simple system of nonconceptual mental representation. In particular, feature integration--perceiving something as (...)
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  26. Austen Clark (2004). Sensing, Objects, and Awareness: Reply to Commentators. Philosophical Psychology 17 (4):553-79.
    I am very grateful to my commentators for their interest and their careful attention to A Theory of Sentience. It is particularly gratifying to find other philosophers attracted to the murky domain of pre-attentive sensory processing, an obscure place where exciting stuff happens. I can by no means answer all of their objections or counter-arguments, and some of the problems noted derive from failures in my original exposition. But a theory is a success if it helps spur the creation of (...)
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  27. Austen Clark (2003). Philosophical Issues About Perception. In L. Nadel (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science. Nature Publishing Group.
     
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  28. Austen Clark (2003). Perception, Philosophical Issues About. In L. Nadel (ed.), The Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science. Nature Publishing Group.
    the philosophical regions. I will identify three: three obvious zones of The first and third of these kinds of problem are studied almost tectonic conflict within contemporary cognitive approaches to exclusively within departments of philosophy. Applied to perception.
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  29. Austen Clark (2001). Phenomenal Consciousness so-Called. In Werner Backhaus (ed.), Neuronal Coding of Perceptual Systems. World Scientific.
    "Consciousness" is a multiply ambiguous word, and if our goal is to explain perceptual consciousness we had better be clear about which of the many senses of the word we are endorsing when we sign on to the project. I describe some of the relatively standard distinctions made in the philosophical literature about different meanings of the word "conscious". Then I consider some of the arguments of David Chalmers and of Ned Block that states of "phenomenal consciousness" pose special and (...)
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  30. Austen Clark (2001). Some Logical Features of Feature Integration. In Werner Backhaus (ed.), Neuronal Coding of Perceptual Systems. World Scientific. 3-20.
    One of the biggest challenges in understanding perception is to understand how the nervous system manages to integrate the multiple codes it uses to represent features in multiple sensory modalities. From different cortical areas, which might separately register the sight of something red and the touch of something smooth, one effortlessly generates the perception of one thing that is both red and smooth. This process has been variously called "feature integration", "binding", or "synthesis". Citing some current models and some historical (...)
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  31. Austen Clark (2001). The Myth of Pain. Valerie Gray Hardcastle. Mind 110 (439):767-771.
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  32. Austen Clark (2000). A Theory of Sentience. New York: Oxford University Press.
    Austen Clark offers a general account of the forms of mental representation that we call "sensory." Drawing on the findings of current neuroscience, Clark defends the hypothesis that the various modalities of sensation share a generic form that he calls "feature-placing." Sensing proceeds by picking out place-times in or around the body of the sentient organism, and characterizing qualities (features) that appear at those place-times. The hypothesis casts light on many other troublesome phenomena, including the varieties of illusion, the problem (...)
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  33. Austen Clark (2000). Quality Space. In Austen Clar (ed.), A Theory of Sentience. Oxford University Press.
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  34. Austen Clark, Sensing and Reference.
    When I was revising _Sensory Qualities_ there was a period of about a year when I set the manuscript aside and did other things. When I returned to it I found that certain portions of the argument had collapsed of their own weight, like an old New England barn, and could be carted off the premises without compunction. Other parts were wobbling on their foundation, while some had weathered well and seemed nice and solid. My revision strategy was simple: I (...)
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  35. Austen Clark (1998). Color Perception (in 3000 Words). In George Graham & William Bechtel (eds.), A Companion to Cognitive Science. Blackwell.
    A neighbor who strikes it rich evokes both admiration and envy, and a similar mix of emotions must be aroused in many neighborhoods of cognitive science when the residents look at the results of research in color perception. It provides what is probably the most widely acknowledged success story of any domain of scientific psychology: the success, against all expectation, of the opponent process theory of color perception. Initially proposed by a Ewald Hering, a nineteenth century physiologist, it drew its (...)
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  36. Austen Clark, How to Respond to Philosophers on Raw Feels.
    I address this talk to anyone who believes in the possibility of an informative empirical science about sensory qualities. Potentially this is a large audience. By "sensory quality" I mean those qualities manifest in various sensory experiences: color, taste, smell, touch, pain, and so on. We should include sensory modalities humans do not share, such as electro-reception in fish, echolocation in bats, or the skylight compass in birds. Those pursuing empirical science about this large domain might pursue it in the (...)
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  37. Austen Clark, Inversions Spectral and Bright: Comments on Melinda Campbell.
    Spectrum inversion is a thought experiment, and I would wager that there is no better diagnostic test to the disciplinary affiliation of a randomly selected member of the audience than your reaction to a thought experiment. It is a litmus test. If you find that you are paying close attention, subvocalizing objections, and that your heart-rate and metabolism go up, you have turned pink: you are a philosopher. If on the other hand the thought experiment leaves you cold, and you (...)
     
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  38. Austen Clark (1996). Review of Robert Schwartz, Vision: Variations on Some Berkeleian Themes. [REVIEW] Philosophical Psychology 9 (1):147-51.
    The excavation of old battlefields can yield some surprises. The old muskets or catapults turn out to be, for the age, surprisingly lethal devices, and the issues which separated the contestants, as well as the alliances which joined some of them, are often found to differ from those described to us in the official histories, written by the victors. So it is too with intellectual history. Robert Schwartz has provided a delightful example of the joys of excavation in this book (...)
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  39. Austen Clark (1996). True Theories, False Colors. Philosophy of Science (Supplement) 63 (3):143-50.
    University of Connecticut Storrs, CT 06279-2054 Abstract. Recent versions of objectivism can reply to the argument from metamers. The deeper rift between subjectivists and objectivists lies in the question of how to explain the structure of qualitative similarities among the colors. Subjectivism grounded in this fashion can answer the circularity objection raised by Dedrick. It endorses skepticism about the claim that there is some one property of objects that it is the function of color vision to detect. Color vision (...)
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  40. Austen Clark (1996). Three Varieties of Visual Field. Philosophical Psychology 9 (4):477-95.
    The goal of this paper is to challenge the rather insouciant attitude that many investigators seem to adopt when they go about describing the items and events in their "visual fields". There are at least three distinct categories of interpretation of what these reports might mean, and only under one of those categories do those reports have anything resembling an observational character. The others demand substantive revisions in one's beliefs about what one sees. The ur-concept of a "visual field" is (...)
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  41. Austen Clark (1994). Beliefs and Desires Incorporated. Journal of Philosophy 91 (8):404-25.
    Suppose we admit for the sake of argument that "folk" explanations of human behavior--explanations in terms of beliefs and desires--sometimes succeed. They sometimes enable us to understand and predict patterns of motion that otherwise would remain unintelligible and unanticipated. Is the only explanation for such success that folk psychology is a viable proto-scientific theory of human psychology? I shall describe an analysis which yields a negative answer to that question. It was suggested by an observation and an analogy, both of (...)
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  42. Austen Clark (1994). Contemporary Problems in the Philosophy of Perception. American Journal of Psychology 107 (4):613-22.
    Imagine, if you will, that the entire community of investigators interested in the problems of perception all lived together in the same town. Some continual shuffling of neighbors would be inevitable, and there might be occasional episodes of mass relocation and energetic bulldozing, but after a while the residents would probably settle down and find themselves living in districts defined roughly by disciplinary boundaries. The experimental psychologists would occupy the newer part of town, laced with superhighways, workshops and factories, machines (...)
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  43. Austen Clark, I Am Joe's Explanatory Gap.
    _tableau_ can be given a full and satisfying explanation, while others cannot. We can explain in a full and satisfying way why the water in the mug is identical with H2O, why its liquidity is identical with a state of its molecular bonds, and why its heat is identical with its molecules being in motion. But we cannot explain in the same way why the neural processes which Joe undergoes when he looks at the mug are such as to make (...)
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  44. Austen Clark, A Subjectivist Reply to Spectrum Inversion.
    Subjectivists hold that you cannot specify color kinds without implicitly or explicitly referring to the dispositions of observers. Even though "yellow" is ascribed to physical items, and presumably there is something physical in each such item causing it to be so characterized, the only physical similarity between all such items is that they all affect an observer in the same way. So the principles organizing the colors are all found within the skin.
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  45. Austen Clark (1993). Mice, Shrews, and Misrepresentation. Journal of Philosophy 60 (6):290-310.
  46. Austen Clark (1992). Reductionism and Subjectivism Defined and Defended. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 15 (1):32-33.
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  47. Austen Clark (1992). Sensory Qualities. Clarendon.
    Drawing on work in psychophysics, psychometrics, and sensory neurophysiology, Clark analyzes the character and defends the integrity of psychophysical explanations of qualitative facts, arguing that the structure of such explanations is sound and potentially successful.
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  48. Austen Clark (1989). The Particulate Instantiation of Homogeneous Pink. Synthese 80 (August):277-304.
    If one examines the sky at sunset on a clear night, one seems to see a continuum of colors from reds, oranges and yellows to a deep blue-black. Between any two colored points in the sky there seem to be other colored points. Furthermore, the changes in color across the sky appear to be continuous. Although the colors at the zenith and the horizon are obviously distinct, nowhere in the sky can one see any color borders, and every sufficiently small (...)
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  49. Austen Clark (1987). The Algorithm/Implementation Distinction. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 10 (3):480.
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