Consciousness and nonconceptual content [Book Review]

Philosophical Studies 113 (3):261-274 (2003)
Consciousness, Color, and Content is a significant contribution to our understanding of consciousness, among other things. I have learned a lot from it, as well as Tye’s other writings. What’s more, I actually agree with much of it – fortunately for this symposium, not all of it. The book continues the defense of the “PANIC” theory of phenomenal consciousness that Tye began in Ten Problems of Consciousness (1995). A fair chunk of it, though, is largely independent of this theory: the discussion of the knowledge argument, the explanatory gap, and color. Tye says much of interest about these topics. But as most of my disagreement is with the PANIC theory, I shall concentrate on that. The PANIC theory is nothing short of ambitious. It is a reductive account of phenomenal consciousness in intentional/functional terms. Tye further gives, at least in outline, a broadly physicalistic account of intentionality (a “naturalized semantics”), in terms of causal covariation. Putting the PANIC theory and Tye’s naturalized semantics together, the result is a physicalistically acceptable theory of phenomenal consciousness. The two parts of this package are independent. A naturalized semantics can be combined with dualism about consciousness (a position close to this is in Chalmers, 1996). And a PANIC theorist is at liberty to endorse a rival physicalistic theory of intentionality, or indeed could take intentionality to be entirely irreducible. The plan is this. Section 1 briefly airs a concern about Tye’s naturalized semantics. The rest of the paper focuses on the PANIC theory, in particular the use it makes of “nonconceptual content”.1 Philosophical Studies 113: 261–274, 2003. © 2003 Kluwer Academic Publishers. Printed in the Netherlands. 262..
Keywords Conceptualism  Consciousness  Content  Metaphysics  Phenomena  Tye, M
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DOI 10.1023/A:1024088203357
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Representationalism About Consciousness.William E. Seager & David Bourget - 2007 - In Max Velmans & Susan Schneider (eds.), The Blackwell Companion to Consciousness. Blackwell. pp. 261-276.
Nonconceptual Content.Josefa Toribio - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (3):445–460.
A New Argument for Nonconceptual Content.Adina L. Roskies - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (3):633–659.

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