Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (2005)

Authors
Michael Huemer
University of Colorado, Boulder
Abstract
Sense data are the alleged mind-dependent objects that we are directly aware of in perception, and that have exactly the properties they appear to have. For instance, sense data theorists say that, upon viewing a tomato in normal conditions, one forms an image of the tomato in one's mind. This image is red and round. The mental image is an example of a “sense datum.” Many philosophers have rejected the notion of sense data, either because they believe that perception gives us direct awareness of physical phenomena, rather than mere mental images, or because they believe that the mental phenomena involved in perception do not have the properties that appear to us (for instance, I might have a visual experience representing a red, round tomato, but my experience is not itself red or round). Defenders of sense data have argued, among other things, that sense data are required to explain such phenomena as perspectival variation, illusion, and hallucination. Critics of sense data have objected to the theory's commitment to mind-body dualism, the problems it raises for our knowledge of the external world, its difficulty in locating sense data in physical space, and its apparent commitment to the existence of objects with indeterminate properties
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References found in this work BETA

Epiphenomenal Qualia.Frank Jackson - 1982 - Philosophical Quarterly 32 (April):127-136.
Empiricism and the Philosophy of Mind.Wilfrid S. Sellars - 1956 - Minnesota Studies in the Philosophy of Science 1:253-329.
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Citations of this work BETA

Imperative Content and the Painfulness of Pain.Manolo Martínez - 2011 - Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 10 (1):67-90.
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The Primary Objects of Perception.David H. Sanford - 1976 - Mind 85 (April):189-208.
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Illusions and Sense-Data.David H. Sanford - 1981 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 6 (1):371-385.
Sight and Sense-Data.H. V. Stainsby - 1970 - Mind 79 (April):170-187.
Sense-Data.Paul Coates - 2007 - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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