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Misrepresenting consciousness

Philosophical Studies 154 (3):409 - 433 (2011)

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  1. The Semantics of ‘What It’s Like’ and the Nature of Consciousness.Daniel Stoljar - 2016 - Mind 125 (500):1161-1198.
    This paper defends a novel view of ‘what it is like’-sentences, according to which they attribute certain sorts of relations—I call them ‘affective relations’—that hold between events and individuals. The paper argues in detail for the superiority of this proposal over other views that are prevalent in the literature. The paper further argues that the proposal makes better sense than the alternatives of the widespread use of Nagel’s definition of conscious states and that it also shows the mistakes in two (...)
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  • Change Blindness and Misrepresentation.Asger Kirkeby-Hinrup - 2016 - Disputatio 8 (42):37-56.
    Some proponents of the higher-order thought theory of consciousness defend the view that higher-order misrepresentation is possible. In support of this view they have proposed various pieces of empirical evidence. This paper examines one such piece of proposed empirical evidence; Change blindness. CB occurs when a subject fails to detect salient changes in visual scenes. I propose an alternative interpretation of the CB phenomenon on which misrepresentation does not occur. Finally, I examine three lines of reply that might be pursued (...)
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  • The Idols of Inner-Sense.Chad Kidd - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (7):1759-1782.
    Many philosophers hold one of two extreme views about our capacity to have phenomenally conscious experience : either that inner-sense enables us to know our experience and its properties infallibly or the contrary conviction that inner-sense is utterly fallible and the evidence it provides completely defeasible. Both of these are in error. This paper presents an alternative conception of inner-sense, modeled on disjunctive conceptions of perceptual awareness, that avoids both erroneous extremes, but that builds on the commonsense intuitions that motivate (...)
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  • On Ambitious Higher-Order Theories of Consciousness.Joseph Gottlieb - 2020 - Philosophical Psychology 33 (3):421-441.
    ABSTRACTAmbitious Higher-order theories of consciousness – Higher-order theories that purport to give an account of phenomenal consciousness – face a well-known objection from the possibility of ra...
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  • Exaggerated Reports: Reply to Block.David Rosenthal - 2011 - Analysis 71 (3):431-437.
  • Response to Rosenthal and Weisberg.N. Block - 2011 - Analysis 71 (3):443-448.
  • Abusing the Notion of What-It's-Like-Ness: A Response to Block.J. Weisberg - 2011 - Analysis 71 (3):438-443.
    Ned Block argues that the higher-order (HO) approach to explaining consciousness is ‘defunct’ because a prominent objection (the ‘misrepresentation objection’) exposes the view as ‘incoherent’. What’s more, a response to this objection that I’ve offered elsewhere (Weisberg 2010) fails because it ‘amounts to abusing the notion of what-it’s-like-ness’ (xxx).1 In this response, I wish to plead guilty as charged. Indeed, I will continue herein to abuse Block’s notion of what-it’s-like-ness. After doing so, I will argue that the HO approach accounts (...)
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  • The Higher Order Approach to Consciousness is Defunct.Ned Block - 2011 - Analysis 71 (3):419 - 431.
    The higher order approach to consciousness attempts to build a theory of consciousness from the insight that a conscious state is one that the subject is conscious of. There is a well-known objection1 to the higher order approach, a version of which is fatal. Proponents of the higher order approach have realized that the objection is significant. They have dealt with it via what David Rosenthal calls a “retreat” (2005b, p. 179) but that retreat fails to solve the problem.
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  • The HOROR Theory of Phenomenal Consciousness.Richard Brown - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (7):1783-1794.
    One popular approach to theorizing about phenomenal consciousness has been to connect it to representations of a certain kind. Representational theories of consciousness can be further sub-divided into first-order and higher-order theories. Higher-order theories are often interpreted as invoking a special relation between the first-order state and the higher-order state. However there is another way to interpret higher-order theories that rejects this relational requirement. On this alternative view phenomenal consciousness consists in having suitable higher-order representations. I call this ‘HOROR’ (‘Higher-Order (...)
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  • Higher-Order Theories of Consciousness and What-It-is-Like-Ness.Jonathan Farrell - 2018 - Philosophical Studies 175 (11):2743-2761.
    Ambitious higher-order theories of consciousness aim to account for conscious states when these are understood in terms of what-it-is-like-ness. This paper considers two arguments concerning this aim, and concludes that ambitious theories fail. The misrepresentation argument against HO theories aims to show that the possibility of radical misrepresentation—there being a HO state about a state the subject is not in—leads to a contradiction. In contrast, the awareness argument aims to bolster HO theories by showing that subjects are aware of all (...)
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  • Brentano's Dual‐Framing Theory of Consciousness.Uriah Kriegel - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 97 (1):79-98.
    Brentano's theory of consciousness has garnered a surprising amount of attention in recent philosophy of mind. Here I argue for a novel interpretation of Brentano's theory that casts it as more original than previously appreciated and yet quite plausible upon inspection. According to Brentano's theory, as interpreted here, a conscious experience of a tree is a mental state that can be simultaneously thought of, or framed, equally accurately as an awareness of a tree or an awareness of an awareness of (...)
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  • A Higher-Order Theory of Emotional Consciousness.Richard Brown & Joseph LeDoux - 2017 - Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.
    Emotional states of consciousness, or what are typically called emotional feelings, are traditionally viewed as being innately programed in subcortical areas of the brain, and are often treated as different from cognitive states of consciousness, such as those related to the perception of external stimuli. We argue that conscious experiences, regardless of their content, arise from one system in the brain. On this view, what differs in emotional and non-emotional states is the kind of inputs that are processed by a (...)
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  • A Defence of the Resemblance Meaning of ‘What It’s Like’.Richard Gaskin - 2019 - Mind 128 (511):673-698.
    It is often held to be definitive of consciousness that there is something it is like to be in a conscious state. A consensus has arisen that ‘is like’ in relevant ‘what it is like’ locutions does not mean ‘resembles’. This paper argues that the consensus is mistaken. It is argued that a recently proposed ‘affective’ analysis of these locutions fails, but that a purported rival of the resemblance analysis, the property account, is in fact compatible with it. Some of (...)
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  • Keeping It Real: Intentional Inexistents, Fineness‐of‐Grain, and the Dilemma for Extrinsic Higher‐Order Representational Theories.Vincent Picciuto - 2017 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 98 (4):555-575.
    According to the standard argument from targetless higher-order representations, the possibility of such representations presents a dilemma for higher-order theorists. In this article I argue that there are two theoretically well-motivated replies to the standard argument. Consequently, the standard argument against higher-order theories fails. I then go on to argue that while certain versions of higher-order theory can adequately respond to the standard argument, they both, nevertheless, fail to explain the fineness-of-grain that phenomenally conscious experience appears to have.
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  • Consciousness is Not a Property of States: A Reply to Wilberg.Jacob Berger - 2014 - Philosophical Psychology 27 (6):829-842.
    According to Rosenthal's higher-order thought (HOT) theory of consciousness, one is in a conscious mental state if and only if one is aware of oneself as being in that state via a suitable HOT. Several critics have argued that the possibility of so-called targetless HOTs?that is, HOTs that represent one as being in a state that does not exist?undermines the theory. Recently, Wilberg (2010) has argued that HOT theory can offer a straightforward account of such cases: since consciousness is a (...)
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  • A Seeming Problem for Higher-Order Theories of Consciousness.Jesse M. Mulder - 2016 - Dialogue 55 (3):449-465.
  • How Things Seem to Higher-Order Thought Theorists.Jacob Berger - 2017 - Dialogue 56 (3):503-526.
    According to David Rosenthal’s higher-order thought (HOT) theory of consciousness, a mental state is conscious just in case one is aware of being in that state via a suitable HOT. Jesse Mulder (2016) recently objects: though HOT theory holds that conscious states are states that it seems to one that one is in, the view seems unable to explain how HOTs engender such seemings. I clarify here how HOT theory can adequately explain the relevant mental appearances, illustrating the explanatory power (...)
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