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Attention and Iconic Memory

In Christopher Mole, Declan Smithies and W. & Wayne Wu (eds.), Attention: Philosophical and Psychological Essays. Oxford University Press (2011)

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  1. Perceptual Pluralism.Jake Quilty‐Dunn - forthcoming - Noûs.
    Perceptual systems respond to proximal stimuli by forming mental representations of distal stimuli. A central goal for the philosophy of perception is to characterize the representations delivered by perceptual systems. It may be that all perceptual representations are in some way proprietarily perceptual and differ from the representational format of thought (Dretske 1981; Carey 2009; Burge 2010; Block ms.). Or it may instead be that perception and cognition always trade in the same code (Prinz 2002; Pylyshyn 2003). This paper rejects (...)
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  • Phillips on Unconscious Perception and Overflow.Nicholas D’Aloisio-Montilla - 2019 - Philosophia 47 (3):649-662.
    Phillips argues that Block faces a “serious internal challenge” in defending the claim that unconscious perception is of the same fundamental kind as conscious perception. This challenge is said to result from Block’s commitment to phenomenal overflow. However, in this paper, I demonstrate that Phillips’ rejection of overflow likewise renders his view on unconscious perception “internally challenged” and therefore equally problematic.
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  • Perceptual Consciousness Overflows Cognitive Access.Ned Block - 2011 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 15 (12):567-575.
    One of the most important issues concerning the foundations ofconscious perception centerson thequestion of whether perceptual consciousness is rich or sparse. The overflow argument uses a form of ‘iconic memory’ toarguethatperceptual consciousnessisricher (i.e.,has a higher capacity) than cognitive access: when observing a complex scene we are conscious of more than we can report or think about. Recently, the overflow argumenthas been challenged both empirically and conceptually. This paper reviews the controversy, arguing that proponents of sparse perception are committed to the (...)
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  • Can the Unconscious Image Save “No Overflow”?Nicholas D’Aloisio-Montilla - 2018 - Disputatio 10 (48):1-42.
    The question of whether phenomenal consciousness is limited to the capacity of cognitive access remains a contentious issue in philosophy. Overflow theorists argue that the capacity of conscious experience outstrips the capacity of cognitive access. This paper demonstrates a resolution to the overflow debate is found in acknowledging a difference in phenomenological timing required by both sides. It makes clear that the “no overflow” view requires subjects to, at the bare minimum, generate an unconscious visual image of previously presented items (...)
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  • Imagery and Overflow: We See More Than We Report.Nicholas D’Aloisio-Montilla - 2017 - Philosophical Psychology 30 (5):545-570.
    The question of whether our conscious experience is rich or sparse remains an enduring controversy in philosophy. The “overflow” account argues that perceptual consciousness is far richer than cognitive access: when perceiving a complex scene, subjects see more than they can report. This paper draws on aphantasia to propose a new argument in favor of overflow. First, it shows that opponents of overflow explain subjects’ performance in a change detection paradigm by appealing to a type of “internal imagery.” Second, it (...)
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  • A Brief Argument For Consciousness Without Access.Nicholas D'Aloisio‐Montilla - 2018 - Ratio 31 (2):119-136.
    This paper proposes a new argument in favour of the claim that phenomenal consciousness overflows – that is, has a far higher capacity than – cognitive access. It shows that opponents of overflow implicate a necessary role for visual imagery in the change detection paradigm. However, empirical evidence suggests that there is no correlation between visual imagery abilities and performance in this paradigm. Since the use of imagery is not implicated in the performance strategy of subjects, we find a new (...)
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  • No Watershed for Overflow: Recent Work on the Richness of Consciousness.Ian Phillips - 2016 - Philosophical Psychology 29 (2):236-249.
    A familiar and enduring controversy surrounds the question of whether our phenomenal experience “overflows” availability to cognition: do we consciously see more than we can remember and report? Both sides to this debate have long sought to move beyond naïve appeals to introspection by providing empirical evidence for or against overflow. Recently, two notable studies—Bronfman, Brezis, Jacobson, and Usher and Vandenbroucke, Sligte, Fahrenfort, Ambroziak, and Lamme —have purported to provide compelling evidence in favor of overflow. Here I explain why the (...)
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  • Perception and Iconic Memory: What Sperling Doesn't Show.Ian B. Phillips - 2011 - Mind and Language 26 (4):381-411.
    Philosophers have lately seized upon Sperling's partial report technique and subsequent work on iconic memory in support of controversial claims about perceptual experience, in particular that phenomenology overflows cognitive access. Drawing on mounting evidence concerning postdictive perception, I offer an interpretation of Sperling's data in terms of cue-sensitive experience which fails to support any such claims. Arguments for overflow based on change-detection paradigms (e.g. Landman et al., 2003; Sligte et al., 2008) cannot be blocked in this way. However, such paradigms (...)
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