Imaginative Vividness

Journal of the American Philosophical Association 3 (1):32-50 (2017)
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Abstract

How are we to understand the phenomenology of imagining? Attempts to answer this question often invoke descriptors concerning the “vivacity” or “vividness” of our imaginative states. Not only are particular imaginings often phenomenologically compared and contrasted with other imaginings on grounds of how vivid they are, but such imaginings are also often compared and contrasted with perceptions and memories on similar grounds. Yet however natural it may be to use “vividness” and cognate terms in discussions of imagination, it does not take much reflection to see that these terms are ill understood. In this paper, I review both some relevant empirical literature as well as the philosophical literature attempt to get a handle on what it could mean, in an imaginative context, to talk of vividness. As I suggest, this notion ultimately proves to be so problematic as to be philosophically untenable.

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Amy Kind
Claremont McKenna College

Citations of this work

Imagination.Shen-yi Liao & Tamar Gendler - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Modeling Mental Qualities.Andrew Y. Lee - 2021 - The Philosophical Review 130 (2):263-209.
Mental Strength: A Theory of Experience Intensity.Jorge Morales - 2023 - Philosophical Perspectives 37 (1):1-21.
Learning to Imagine.Amy Kind - 2022 - British Journal of Aesthetics 62 (1):33-48.

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References found in this work

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A treatise of human nature.David Hume & A. D. Lindsay - 1969 - Harmondsworth,: Penguin Books. Edited by Ernest Campbell Mossner.
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Content and consciousness.Daniel Clement Dennett - 1969 - New York,: Humanities P..
A Treatise of Human Nature.David Hume & A. D. Lindsay - 1958 - Philosophical Quarterly 8 (33):379-380.

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