The Attention and Perception (2): Assembling the Concept

Brian O'Shaughnessy

in Consciousness and the World

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780199256723
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598135 | DOI:
The Attention and Perception (2): Assembling the Concept

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The definition of perception is defended by piecemeal assembling of the concept of perception. We begin with the assumption that some event is an intentionally directed experience; add that it is of a type that aspires to ‘success’‐status, as seem‐see and try‐act aspire to status see and act ; and add that the object actually exists, and that the ‘aspiration’ is successful. Now this complex property fits both action and perception. Then to define action we have the need of a further and indefinable concept, that of will, whereas to define perception we have all the conceptual material we need, for we need no more than the concepts, experience, and object. Perception is unique in being the only experience that finds its identity under the concept of experience, for it is merely awareness or experience taking an extensional object. Then since consciousness and experience are universal to any account of mind, perception likewise must have a position of centrality in the mind. It is an a priori‐given a priori‐definable concept, built out of a priori‐given concepts. .

Keywords: action; awareness; consciousness; experience; extensionality; object of awareness; object of perception; perception

Chapter.  8416 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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