No Impediment to Solidity as Impediment

Metaphysica 7 (1):35-41 (2006)
Abstract
ABSTRACT: Quassim Cassam (1997) accepts the standard account of solidity, according to which, if S feels x as solid, then S feels x as an imediment to his movement. Recently, Martin Fricke and Paul Snowdon (2003) have presented a battery of counter-examples designed to show that S may feel x as solid and as exerting a pressure that supports or facilitates his movement. In this note, I defend the standard account against Fricke and Snowdon’s attack. Integral to this defense is a distinction between two (sometimes overlapping) ways in which S may feel x as an impediment to his movement: as an influence on a movement state of S, or as an obstacle to the achievement of a goal that requires movement. After demonstrating the primacy of the former sense, I argue that Fricke and Snowdon’s counter-examples only undermine a version of the standard account that glosses ‘impediment’ as an obstacle to the achievement of a goal that requires movement.
Keywords solidity  perception
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