Colour Resemblance and Colour Realism

Rivista di Estetica 43:85-108 (2010)
Authors
Fabian Dorsch
Université de Fribourg
Abstract
One prominent ambition of theories of colour is to pay full justice to how colours are subjectively given to us; and another to reconcile this first-personal perspective on colours with the third-personal one of the natural sciences. The goal of this article is to question whether we can satisfy the second ambition on the assumption that the first should and can be met. I aim to defend a negative answer to this question by arguing that the various kinds of experienced colour resemblances – notably similarities in hue distance, sameness in superdeterminables, and colour resemblances between surfaces, volumes and illuminants – cannot be accounted for in terms of the mental representa-tion of the scientifically studied properties, which colours are best identified with in response to the second ambition
Keywords color  color perception  color experience  physics of color  psychology of color  resemblance  naive realism  phenomenal character  realism  anti-realism
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