Philosophy 290-3

Fall 2012

Number Title Instructor Days/time Room
290-3 Graduate Seminar: Uncovering Appearances: Perception, Object & Content Martin M 2-4 234 Moses

The seminar is principally concerned with framing and developing philosophical accounts of perception in response to the arguments from illusion and hallucination. The issues to be discussed fall into three broad topics:

Object, Experience & Content: Framing the Problem

(1) Direct v Indirect Perception: What is the basis of this distinction in the traditional debate, how does this map on to concerns with sensory awareness and sense experience?

(2) Sensation & the Argument from Illusion: What picture of sense experience derives from a sense-datum account of sensory illusion? How does this inform a representational or intentional theory of perception?

(3) Intentionality & the Causal Argument: How does the Causal Argument, or the Argument from Hallucination, constrain the options for a theory of sense experience?

Why be so Naïve? Reasons for a Relational Approach to Sensory Awareness

(4) Intentional v Relational pictures of sensory awareness I: the case of singular thought; applications to the particularity of sensory awareness & episodic memory

(5) Two-level approaches to phenomenal episodes: embedding sense experience – sensory imagination & episodic memory; explanatory challenge to intentional accounts.

Disjunctivism: Formulation & Consequences

(6) Saving Appearances: disjunctivism as a response to the Causal Argument; the minimal form of disjunctivism so motivated; application of notions of indiscriminability to the case; consequences for non-transitivity of just noticeable difference; particularity of sensory awareness; impossible perception.

(7) Inner Awareness & Outer Knowledge: the unacceptability of disjunctivism concerning appearances, and differing views of our access to the inner realm.