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Simon Prosser [18]Simon James Prosser [1]
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Profile: Simon Prosser (University of St. Andrews)
  1. Simon Prosser (2012). Why Does Time Seem to Pass? Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (1):92-116.
    According to the B-theory, the passage of time is an illusion. The B-theory therefore requires an explanation of this illusion before it can be regarded as fullysatisfactory; yet very few B-theorists have taken up the challenge of trying to provide one. In this paper I take some first steps toward such an explanation by first making a methodological proposal, then a hypothesis about a key element in the phenomenology of temporal passage. The methodological proposal focuses onthe representational content of the (...)
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  2. Simon Prosser (2013). Passage and Perception. Noûs 47 (1):69-84.
    I shall refer to all theories according to which time passes (including dynamic versions of presentism, ‘growing block’ theories, ‘shrinking tree’ theories, and so on) under the umbrella term ‘A-theory’, and I shall use the term ‘B-theory’ in the standard way to refer to the theory according to which time does not pass, and although events are ordered in time there is no objective present time.1 Many philosophers, both A- and B-theorists, have agreed that in experience we are, or at (...)
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  3. Simon Prosser (2007). Could We Experience the Passage of Time? Ratio 20 (1):75-90.
    This is an expanded and revised discussion of the argument briefly put forward in my 'A New Problem for the A-Theory of Time', where it is claimed that it is impossible to experience real temporal passage and that no such phenomenon exists. In the first half of the paper the premises of the argument are discussed in more detail than before. In the second half responses are given to several possible objections, none of which were addressed in the earlier paper. (...)
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  4. Simon Prosser (2011). Affordances and Phenomenal Character in Spatial Perception. Philosophical Review 120 (4):475-513.
    Intentionalism is the view that the phenomenal character of a conscious experience is wholly determined by, or even reducible to, its representational content. In this essay I put forward a version of intentionalism that allows (though does not require) the reduction of phenomenal character to representational content. Unlike other reductionist theories, however, it does not require the acceptance of phenomenal externalism (the view that phenomenal character does not supervene on the internal state of the subject). According the view offered here, (...)
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  5.  43
    Simon Prosser & François Recanati (eds.) (2012). Immunity to Error Through Misidentification: New Essays. Cambridge University Press.
    In this collection of newly commissioned essays, the contributors present a variety of approaches to it, engaging with historical and empirical aspects of the subject as well as contemporary philosophical work.
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  6.  51
    Simon Prosser (2005). Cognitive Dynamics and Indexicals. Mind and Language 20 (4):369–391.
    Frege held that indexical thoughts could be retained through changes of context that required a change of indexical term. I argue that Frege was partially right in that a singular mode of presentation can be retained through changes of indexical. There must, however, be a further mode of presentation that changes when the indexical term changes. This suggests that indexicals should be regarded as complex demonstratives; a change of indexical term is like a change between 'that φ' and 'that ψ', (...)
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  7. Simon Prosser (2006). The Eleatic Non-Stick Frying Pan. Analysis 66 (291):187–194.
    A novel way of making a non-stick frying pan using a topologically open surface is described. While the article has a slight humorous element to it, it is also intended to contain some serious philosophical points concerning the nature of infinitely divisible matter and the kind of contact that must occur between objects in order for them to interact.
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  8.  47
    Simon Prosser (2000). A New Problem for the a-Theory of Time. Philosophical Quarterly 50 (201):494-498.
    : I offer a new approach to the increasingly convoluted debate between the A- and B-theories of time, the ‘tensed’ and ‘tenseless’ theories. It is often assumed that the B-theory faces more difficulties than the A-theory in explaining the apparently tensed features of temporal experience. I argue that the A-theory cannot explain these features at all, because on any physicalist or supervenience theory of the mind, in which the nature of experience is fixed by the physical state of the world, (...)
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  9.  73
    Simon Prosser (2009). Zeno Objects and Supetvenience. Analysis 69 (1):18 - 26.
    Many philosophers accept a ‘layered’ world‐view according to which the facts about the higher ontological levels supervene on the facts about the lower levels. Advocates of such views often have in mind a version of atomism, according to which there is a fundamental level of indivisible objects known as simples or atoms upon whose spatiotemporal locations and intrinsic properties everything at the higher levels supervenes.1 Some, however, accept the possibility of ‘gunk’ worlds in which there are parts ‘all the way (...)
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  10.  16
    Simon Prosser (2015). XII—Why Are Indexicals Essential? Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 115 (3 pt 3):211-233.
    Despite recent challenges, it is commonly held that certain indexical terms such as ‘I', ‘here’ and ‘now’ have a necessary or ‘essential’ role in certain kinds of action. I argue that this is correct, and I offer an explanation. A use of an indexical term of the kind in question connotes a specific relation between the thinking subject and the reference of the indexical. The mental representation of this relation has an epistemic feature that I call first-person redundancy. I show (...)
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  11. Simon Prosser (2012). Emergent Causation. Philosophical Studies 159 (1):21-39.
    Downward causation is commonly held to create problems for ontologically emergent properties. In this paper I describe two novel examples of ontologically emergent properties and show how they avoid two main problems of downward causation, the causal exclusion problem and the causal closure problem. One example involves an object whose colour does not logically supervene on the colours of its atomic parts. The other example is inspired by quantum entanglement cases but avoids controversies regarding quantum mechanics. These examples show that (...)
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  12.  3
    Simon Prosser (2013). The Passage of Time. In Adrian Bardon Heather Dyke (ed.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Time. Wiley-Blackwell 315-327.
    This chapter discusses the notion that time passes, along with two major families of objections to this notion. The first kind of objection concerns the rate at which time passes; it has often been suggested that no coherent rate can be given. The alleged problems for the standard view, that time passes at one second per second, are discussed. A positive suggestion is then made for a way of making sense of the claim that time passes at one second per (...)
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  13.  38
    Simon Prosser (2006). Temporal Metaphysics in Z-Land. Synthese 149 (1):77 - 96.
    John Perry has argued that language, thought and experience often contain unarticulated constituents. I argue that this idea holds the key to explaining away the intuitive appeal of the A-theory of time and the endurance theory of persistence. The A-theory has seemed intuitively appealing because the nature of temporal experience makes it natural for us to use one-place predicates like past to deal with what are really two-place relations, one of whose constituents is unarticulated. The endurance view can be treated (...)
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  14. Simon Prosser (2007). The Two-Dimensional Content of Consciousness. Philosophical Studies 136 (3):319 - 349.
    In this paper I put forward a representationalist theory of conscious experience based on Robert Stalnaker's version of two-dimensional modal semantics. According to this theory the phenomenal character of an experience correlates with a content equivalent to what Stalnaker calls the diagonal proposition. I show that the theory is closely related both to functionalist theories of consciousness and to higher-order representational theories. It is also more compatible with an anti-Cartesian view of the mind than standard representationalist theories.
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  15.  23
    Simon Prosser (2012). Sources of Immunity to Error Through Misidentification. In Simon Prosser Francois Recanati (ed.), Immunity to Error Through Misidentification: New Essays. Cambridge University Press 158-179.
    Saying ┌ that ψ is F ┐ when one should have said ┌ that φ is F ┐ involves making one of two different kinds of error. Either the wrong nominal term (┌ ψ ┐ instead of ┌ φ ┐) is ascribed to the right object or the right nominal term is ascribed to the wrong object. Judgments susceptible to one kind of error are immune to the other. Indexical terms such as ‘here’ and ‘now’ exhibit a corresponding pattern of (...)
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  16.  12
    Simon Prosser (2013). Experience, Thought, and the Metaphysics of Time. In Kasia M. Jaszczolt & Louis de Saussure (eds.), Time: Language, Cognition & Reality. OUP Oxford 1--157.
    In this chapter I argue that there can be no mental representation of objective ‘tensed’ features of reality of the kind that might be thought to occur when we experience time passing or think of times as past, present or future, whether or not such features are part of mind-independent reality. This, I hold, has important consequences for metaphysics; but (as will be most relevant to this volume) it is also likely to have important consequences for a correct semantics for (...)
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  17.  12
    Simon Prosser (2001). Foster, John. The Nature of Perception. Review of Metaphysics 55 (1):132-134.
  18.  2
    Simon Prosser (2016). Experiencing Time. Oxford University Press Uk.
    Our engagement with time is a ubiquitous feature of our lives. We are aware of time on many scales, from the briefest flicker of change to the way our lives unfold over many years. But to what extent does this encounter reveal the true nature of temporal reality? To the extent that temporal reality is as it seems, how do we come to be aware of it? And to the extent that temporal reality is not as it seems, why does (...)
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