Mind-Independence and Visual Phenomenology

Maja Spener

in Introspection and Consciousness

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199744794
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199933396 | DOI:

Series: Philosophy of Mind Series

Mind-Independence and Visual Phenomenology

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Many philosophers claim that ordinary visual experience is as of mind-independent things. This is a claim about the phenomenal character of experience. It tends to be regarded as a simple introspective datum and as such plays a key evidential role in a central way of theorizing about experience. The chapter argues that due to worries arising from introspective disagreement, philosophers employing this putative bit of introspective evidence face the challenge of saying how apparent mind-independence can be an introspectible part of phenomenal character. The chapter explores the idea of extracting apparent mind-independence from other, straightforwardly introspectively available, apparent properties and consider three specific extraction proposals. In each case, it argues that the extraction of apparent mind-independence from the relevant basic apparent properties does not convincingly answer the challenge. It is doubtful that apparent mind-independence of what is presented in experience is a simple introspective datum. This means we have to reconsider its status as introspective evidence in theorizing about experience.

Keywords: visual experience; phenomenal character; perception; introspection; methodology; spatial character; perceptual constancies; introspective disagreement

Chapter.  9959 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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