Relational vs Adverbial Conceptions of Phenomenal Intentionality

In Arthur Sullivan (ed.), Sensations, Thoughts, Language: Essays in honor of Brian Loar. Routledge (forthcoming)
Authors
David Bourget
University of Western Ontario
Abstract
This paper asks whether phenomenal intentionality (intentionality that arises from phenomenal consciousness alone) has a relational structure of the sort envisaged in Russell’s theory of acquaintance. I put forward three arguments in favor of a relation view: one phenomenological, one linguistic, and one based on the view’s ability to account for the truth conditions of phenomenally intentional states. I then consider several objections to the relation view. The chief objection to the relation view takes the form of a dilemma between Platonic and Aristotelian conceptions of the properties constitutive of the contents of phenomenally intentional states on this view: the Aristotelian view seems unable to account for all the apparent contents of phenomenally intentional states, but the Platonic view seems to be ontologically unacceptable. I also consider other objections from physicalism, phenomenology, and epistemology.
Keywords consciousness  phenomenal intentionality  relation view  aspect view  adverbialism  acquaintance  experience  platonism  Brian Loar
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