Experience and content

Philosophical Quarterly 59 (236):429-451 (2009)
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Abstract

The 'content view', in slogan form, is 'Perceptual experiences have representational content'. I explain why the content view should be reformulated to remove any reference to 'experiences'. I then argue, against Bill Brewer, Charles Travis and others, that the content view is true. One corollary of the discussion is that the content of perception is relatively thin (confined, in the visual case, to roughly the output of 'mid-level' vision). Finally, I argue (briefly) that the opponents of the content view are partially vindicated, because perceptual error is due to false belief.

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Alex Byrne
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Citations of this work

Perceptual Content Defended.Susanna Schellenberg - 2011 - Noûs 45 (4):714 - 750.
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Rich or thin?Susanna Siegel & Alex Byrne - 2017 - In Bence Nanay (ed.), Current Controversies in Philosophy of Perception. New York, USA: Routledge. pp. 59-80.
Appearance and Illusion.James Genone - 2014 - Mind 123 (490):339-376.

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References found in this work

The intrinsic quality of experience.Gilbert Harman - 1990 - Philosophical Perspectives 4:31-52.
The silence of the senses.Charles Travis - 2004 - Mind 113 (449):57-94.
Which properties are represented in perception.Susanna Siegel - 2005 - In Tamar S. Gendler & John Hawthorne (eds.), Perceptual Experience. Oxford University Press. pp. 481--503.
The refutation of idealism.G. E. Moore - 1903 - Mind 12 (48):433-453.
The Refutation of Idealism.G. E. Moore - 1903 - Philosophical Review 13:468.

View all 15 references / Add more references