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William S. Robinson [79]William Spencer Robinson [2]
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William Robinson
Iowa State University
  1. Understanding Phenomenal Consciousness.William S. Robinson - 2004 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
    William S. Robinson has for many years written insightfully about the mind-body problem. In Understanding Phenomenal Consciousness he focuses on sensory experience and perception qualities such as colours, sounds and odours to present a dualistic view of the mind, called Qualitative Event Realism, that goes against the dominant materialist views. This theory is relevant to the development of a science of consciousness which is now being pursued not only by philosophers but by researchers in psychology and the brain sciences. This (...)
  2. Understanding Phenomenal Consciousness.William S. Robinson - 2006 - Philosophical Quarterly 56 (222):142-144.
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  3.  20
    "Intentionality, Ascription, and Understanding: Remarks on Professor Hocutt's" Spartans, Strawmen, and Symptoms".William S. Robinson - 1985 - Behaviorism 13 (2):157-162.
  4. Experiencing is not Observing: A Response to Dwayne Moore on Epiphenomenalism and Self-Stultification.William S. Robinson - 2013 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 4 (2):185-192.
    This article defends epiphenomenalism against criticisms raised in Dwayne Moore’s “On Robinson’s Response to the Self-Stultifying Objection”.
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  5. Thoughts without distinctive non-imagistic phenomenology.William S. Robinson - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 70 (3):534-561.
    Silent thinking is often accompanied by subvocal sayings to ourselves, imagery, emotional feelings, and non-sensory experiences such as familiarity, rightness, and confidence that we can go on in certain ways. Phenomenological materials of these kinds, along with our dispositions to give explanations or draw inferences, provide resources that are sufficient to account for our knowledge of what we think, desire, and so on. We do not need to suppose that there is a distinctive, non-imagistic 'what it is like' to think (...)
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  6. Russellian Monism and Epiphenomenalism.William S. Robinson - 2018 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (1):100-117.
    Contemporaries often reject epiphenomenalism out of hand, while Russellian Monism is regarded as worthy of further development. It is argued here that this difference of attitudes is indefensible, because the easy rejection of EPI is due to its violating a certain Causal Intuition, and RM implicitly violates that same intuition. An enriched version of RM mitigates the violation, but the same mitigation results if we make a parallel enrichment of EPI. If RM and EPI are approached on a level playing (...)
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  7.  12
    Thoughts Without Distinctive Non-Imagistic Phenomenology.William S. Robinson - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 70 (3):534-562.
    Silent thinking is often accompanied by subvocal sayings to ourselves, imagery, emotional feelings, and non-sensory experiences such as familiarity, rightness, and confidence that we can go on in certain ways. Phenomenological materials of these kinds, along with our dispositions to give explanations or draw inferences, provide resources that are sufficient to account for our knowledge of what we think, desire, and so on. We do not need to suppose that there is a distinctive, non-imagistic ‘what it is like’ to think (...)
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  8.  38
    A frugal view of cognitive phenomenology.William S. Robinson - 2011 - In Tim Bayne and Michelle Montague (ed.), Cognitive Phenomenology. Oxford University Press. pp. 197.
  9.  3
    Brains and People: An Essay on Mentality and its Causal Conditions.William Spencer Robinson - 1988 - Philadelphia: Temple University Press.
  10. Causation, sensations, and knowledge.William S. Robinson - 1982 - Mind 91 (October):524-40.
  11.  16
    Epiphenomenal Mind: An Integrated Outlook on Sensations, Beliefs, and Pleasure.William S. Robinson - 2018 - New York: Routledge.
    According to epiphenomenalism, our behavior is caused by events in our brains that also cause our mentality. This resulting mentality reflects our brains¿ organization, but does not in turn cause anything. This book defends an epiphenomenalist account of philosophy of mind. It builds on the author¿s previous work by moving beyond a discussion of sensations to apply an epiphenomenalist outlook to other aspects of mental causation such as beliefs, desires, pleasure, and displeasure. The first four chapters of the book argue (...)
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  12. Knowing epiphenomena.William S. Robinson - 2006 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 13 (1-2):85-100.
    This paper begins with a summary of an argument for epiphenomenalism and a review of the author's previous work on the self-stultification objection to that view. The heart of the paper considers an objection to this previous work and provides a new response to it. Questions for this new response are considered and a view is developed in which knowledge of our own mentality is seen to differ from our knowledge of external things.
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  13.  51
    Dispensing with Experiential Acquaintance.William S. Robinson - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    : Experiential acquaintance is an alleged relation between ourselves and our experiences that has sometimes been hypothesized as necessary for knowledge of our experiences. This paper begins with a clarification of ‘acquaintance’ and an explanation of ‘experience’ that focuses attention on a famous, but flawed, argument by G. E. Moore. It goes on to critically examine several recent arguments concerning experiential acquaintance and to show how internalist foundationalism can respond to a famous Sellarsian dilemma without appeal to a relation of (...)
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  14. Zooming in on downward causation.William S. Robinson - 2005 - Biology and Philosophy 20 (1):117-136.
    . An attempt is made to identify a concept of ‘downward causation’ that will fit the claims of some recent writers and apply to interesting cases in biology and cognitive theory, but not to trivial cases. After noting some difficulties in achieving this task, it is proposed that in interesting cases commonly used to illustrate ‘downward causation’, (a) regularities hold between multiply realizable properties and (b) the explanation of the parallel regularity at the level of the realizing properties is non-trivial. (...)
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  15.  52
    Phenomenal realist physicalism implies coherency of epiphenomenalist meaning.William S. Robinson - 2012 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 19 (3-4):145-163.
    Recent criticisms of epiphenomenalism include a meaning objection. This is a self-stultification objection according to which epiphenomenalism is incoherent, because phenomenal terms could not mean what epiphenomenalists say they mean if epiphenomenalism were true. This paper seeks to remove the sting of this objection by showing that one can construct a coherent epiphenomenalist theory of meaning from any coherent account that may be offered by a phenomenal realist physicalist. This argument bears adversely on an important argument offered by Balog , (...)
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  16.  45
    States and beliefs.William S. Robinson - 1990 - Mind 99 (393):33-51.
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  17. Dispensing with experiential acquaintance.William S. Robinson - forthcoming - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy.
    Experiential acquaintance is an alleged relation between ourselves and our experiences that has sometimes been hypothesised as necessary for knowledge of our experiences. This paper begins with a clarification of ‘acquaintance’ and an explanation of ‘experience’ that focuses attention on a famous, but flawed, argument by G. E. Moore. It goes on to critically examine several recent arguments concerning experiential acquaintance and to show how internalist foundationalism can respond to a famous Sellarsian dilemma without appeal to a relation of acquaintance (...)
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  18.  37
    Computers, Minds, and Robots.William S. Robinson - 1992 - Temple University Press.
    Discusses the problems that surround the developing science of Artificial Intelligence (AI). This title introduces and clarifies the basic concepts for understanding these problems and also discusses opposing views and possible solutions. It describes the kinds of research that seem to improve our understanding of the mechanisms of intelligence.
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  19.  75
    The hardness of the hard problem.William S. Robinson - 1996 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 3 (1):14-25.
    This paper offers an account of why the Hard Problem cannot be solved within our present conceptual framework. The reason is that some property of each conscious experience lacks structure, while explanations of the kind that would overcome the Hard Problem require structure in the occurrences that are to be explained. This account is apt to seem incorrect for reasons that trace to relational theories of consciousness. I thus review a highly developed representative version of relational theory and explain why (...)
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  20. The legend of the given.William S. Robinson - 1975 - In Hector-Neri Castaneda (ed.), Action, Knowledge, and Reality. Bobbs-Merrill.
     
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  21.  11
    Panexperientialism and Radical Emergence.William S. Robinson - 2024 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 31 (1):149-172.
    Panexperientialists hold that experience is a fundamental feature of our universe, and that their view avoids radical emergence by providing an intelligible ground for our human experiences. This paper argues that they face a radical emergence problem of their own, and that they can avoid radical emergence only by adopting a strategy that can also be used by dualists (whose view they reject). It also argues that panexperientialists must either hold that all experiential properties they regard as simple must have (...)
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  22.  41
    Toward Eliminating Churchland’s Eliminationism.William S. Robinson - 1985 - Philosophical Topics 13 (2):60-67.
  23.  21
    Toward Eliminating Churchland’s Eliminationism.William S. Robinson - 1985 - Philosophical Topics 13 (2):61-68.
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  24.  15
    Brains and People.William S. Robinson - 1990 - Behavior and Philosophy 18 (2):101-104.
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  25.  14
    Mild realism, causation, and folk psychology.William S. Robinson - 1995 - Philosophical Psychology 8 (2):167-187.
  26.  88
    What is it like to like?William S. Robinson - 2006 - Philosophical Psychology 19 (6):743-765.
    The liking of a sensation, e.g., a taste, is a conscious occurrent but does not consist in having the liked sensation accompanied by a "pleasure sensation" - for there is no such sensation. Several alternative accounts of liking, including Aydede's "feeling episode" theory and Schroeder's representationalist theory are considered. The proposal that liking a sensation is having the non-sensory experience of liking directed upon it is explained and defended. The pleasure provided by thoughts, conversations, walks, etc., is analyzed and brought (...)
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  27.  65
    Mild realism, causation, and folk psychology.William S. Robinson - 1996 - Philosophical Psychology 8 (2):167-87.
    Daniel Dennett (1991) has advanced a mild realism in which beliefs are described as patterns “discernible in agents' (observable) behavior” (p. 30). I clarify the conflict between this otherwise attractive theory and the strong realist view that beliefs are internal states that cause actions. Support for strong realism is sometimes derived from the assumption that the everyday psychology of the folk is committed to it. My main thesis here is that we have sufficient reason neither for strong realism nor for (...)
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  28.  80
    Some nonhuman animals can have pains in a morally relevant sense.William S. Robinson - 1997 - Biology and Philosophy 12 (1):51-71.
    In a series of works, Peter Carruthers has argued for the denial of the title proposition. Here, I defend that proposition by offering direct support drawn from relevant sciences and by undercutting Carruthers argument. In doing the latter, I distinguish an intrinsic theory of consciousness from Carruthers relational theory of consciousness. This relational theory has two readings, one of which makes essential appeal to evolutionary theory. I argue that neither reading offers a successful view.
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  29. Perception, affect and epiphenomenalism: Commentary on Mangan's.William S. Robinson - 2004 - PSYCHE: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Research On Consciousness 10.
    This commentary begins by explaining how Mangan's important work leads to a question about the relation between non-sensory experiences and perception. Reflection on affect then suggests an addition to Mangan's view that may be helpful on this and perhaps some other questions. Finally, it is argued that acceptance of non-sensory experiences is fully compatible with epiphenomenalism.
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  30. Sellarsian materialism.William S. Robinson - 1982 - Philosophy of Science 49 (June):212-27.
    Wilfrid Sellars has proposed a materialist account of sensation which relies in part on the postulation of special kinds of individuals. This postulational strategy appears to be analogous to the one that introduces such entities as electrons. After setting out Sellars' account, I focus on his application of the postulational strategy. I argue that this application requires the discovery of new effects for familiar properties; that this kind of discovery is disanalogous to what postulation usually does; and that this kind (...)
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  31. Colors, arousal, functionalism, and individual differences.William S. Robinson - 2004 - PSYCHE: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Research On Consciousness 10.
    Some philosophers have regarded the connection between hues and certain arousal or affective qualities as so intimate as to make them inseparable, and this “necessary concomitance view” has been invoked to defend functionalism against arguments based on inverted spectra. Support for the necessary concomitance view has sometimes been thought to accrue from experiments in psychology. This paper examines three experiments, two of which apparently offer support for the view. It argues that careful consideration of these experiments undermines this appearance of (...)
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  32.  23
    A few thoughts too many?William S. Robinson - 2004 - In Rocco J. Gennaro (ed.), Higher-Order Theories of Consciousness: An Anthology. John Benjamins.
  33.  58
    Ascription, Intentionality and Understanding.William S. Robinson - 1986 - The Monist 69 (4):584-597.
    The three terms of my title are connected in an interesting and mutually illuminating way. To exhibit this connection I shall first state a view about our ascriptions of psychological states. I shall then make use of this view in sketching an account of intentionality. Defending this account will require us to envisage a certain kind of involvement in linguistic practice. This involvement is related to historical understanding and to the view that this must be contrasted with explanation. In my (...)
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  34.  31
    James’s Evolutionary Argument.William S. Robinson - 2014 - Disputatio 6 (39):229-237.
    This paper is a commentary on Joseph Corabi’s “The Misuse and Failure of the Evolutionary Argument”, this Journal, vol. VI, No. 39; pp. 199-227. It defends William James’s formulation of the evolutionary argument against charges such as mishandling of evidence. Although there are ways of attacking James’s argument, it remains formidable, and Corabi’s suggested revision is not an improvement on James’s statement of it.
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  35. Evolution and Self Evidence.William S. Robinson - 1996 - Philosophica 57 (1):35-51.
    Robert Nozick (1993) has offered an evolutionary account of self-evident beliefs that comes into conflict with a "mild realist" (Dennett, 1991a) view of beliefs. This chapter summarizes both views, and explains the conflict. Emergence is examined. Mild realism is found to embrace "emergence" in an acceptable sense, and to eschew it in its problematic sense. Nozick's cases of self-evident beliefs are examined and difficulties in his account are explained. An alternative approach is developed that avoids the difficulties in Nozick's account (...)
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  36.  22
    Dis-Illusioning Experiences.William S. Robinson - 2023 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 14 (4):1219-1236.
    In his defense of Illusionism, D. Pereboom quotes S. Shoemaker as finding it mysterious how we can represent properties that are nowhere instantiated in our world. This paper begins by detailing the problem, clarifying its relation to Illusionism, and explaining the inadequacy of Pereboom’s response. It then examines papers by K. Frankish and F. Kammerer, and finds that they face the same problem. With this background, it becomes plausible that representation of uninstantiated properties is an endemic problem for illusionism. Responding (...)
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  37. Qualia realism.William S. Robinson - 2000 - A Field Guide to the Philosophy of Mind.
  38.  26
    Pictures, Images and Conceptual Change, An Analysis of Wilfrid Sellars' Philosophy of Science.William S. Robinson - 1983 - Philosophy of Science 50 (4):671-672.
  39.  27
    A gap not bridged.William S. Robinson - 1998 - Consciousness and Cognition 7 (2):210-211.
  40.  32
    A theory of phenomenal consciousness?William S. Robinson - 1999 - PSYCHE: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Research On Consciousness 5.
    Peter Carruthers offers a model that embraces first order representations and higher order representations or higher order thoughts . His model stipulates certain features of FORs and HOTs. Carruthers agrees with qualia realists that the FORs of his model are not adequate for phenomenal consciousness, and invokes HOTs to supply the required addition. It is argued that Carruthers' HOTs fail to provide anything that will enable him to account for phenomenal consciousness, i.e., that his model fails to include phenomenal consciousness (...)
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  41.  75
    Brain symbols and computationalist explanation.William S. Robinson - 1995 - Minds and Machines 5 (1):25-44.
    Computationalist theories of mind require brain symbols, that is, neural events that represent kinds or instances of kinds. Standard models of computation require multiple inscriptions of symbols with the same representational content. The satisfaction of two conditions makes it easy to see how this requirement is met in computers, but we have no reason to think that these conditions are satisfied in the brain. Thus, if we wish to give computationalist explanations of human cognition, without committing ourselvesa priori to a (...)
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  42.  2
    Commentary.William S. Robinson - unknown
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  43. Could a robot be qualitatively conscious?William S. Robinson - 1998 - Aisb 99:13-18.
     
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  44.  33
    Chisholm's paralogism.William S. Robinson - 1979 - Philosophical Studies 36 (3):309 - 316.
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  45.  57
    Dennett's analysis of awareness.William S. Robinson - 1972 - Philosophical Studies 23 (3):147-52.
  46.  29
    Dennett's Dilemma.William S. Robinson & A. David Kline - 1979 - Journal of Critical Analysis 8 (1):1-4.
  47. Dretske's etiological view.William S. Robinson - 1983 - Southwest Philosophical Studies 9:23-29.
  48.  24
    Do pains make a difference to our behavior?William S. Robinson - 1979 - American Philosophical Quarterly 16 (4):327-34.
  49.  40
    Direct representation.William S. Robinson - 1995 - Philosophical Studies 80 (3):305-22.
  50.  8
    3 Experience and Representation.William S. Robinson - 2008 - In Edmond Wright (ed.), The Case for Qualia. MIT Press. pp. 73.
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