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The Experience in Perception: A Defence of a Stative Conception of Experiences

Sanhueza Rodriguez, SI; (2015) The Experience in Perception: A Defence of a Stative Conception of Experiences. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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In contemporary philosophy of perception, relatively little attention is paid to the fundamental question what we talk about when we talk about perceptual experiences, that is, what kind of entities they are. The present dissertation addresses this ontological question, so as to outline and partially to defend a stative view of perceptual experiences, that is, a view according to which perceptual experiences are mental states as opposed to mental processes. This project is divided into five chapters. Chapter 1 unpacks and critically assesses the main target of this dissertation, a processive view or a view according to which processes of a phenomenally conscious kind are essential to our understanding of perceptual awareness. Chapter 2 formulates the ontological stance I advocate, namely, a stative view. The following two chapters turn to a positive defense of this position. Chapter 3 argues that the stative conception is better suited than a processive view to account for the identity over time of perceptual experiences. Chapter 4 turns to what is known as the assertive character of perceptual experiences: in a nutshell, the thought is that, when a subject is perceptually aware of her surroundings or undergoes perceptual hallucinations, she does not passively entertain a complex mosaic of worldly items; instead, her experiences present her with such items as being the case. The assertive character of perceptual experiences is, I think, a feature best accommodated by a stative view than a processive one. Finally, chapter 5 explores how a stative view may specify the difference between perceptual experiences and beliefs: in this context, I argue that a stative view seems to vindicate state nonconceptualism, that is, the view that perceptual states need not be conceptdependent.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The Experience in Perception: A Defence of a Stative Conception of Experiences
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1471045
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