1Richard Price, Oxford University, 4/3/04Comments welcome: email@example.com Experiencing Colours and Shapes
Imagine that you are looking at a red, round tomato. What properties does yourexperience represent the object as having? Presumably your experience represents theobject as red and round, but does it also represent it as being a tomato, and as beingbought from Sainsbury’s as opposed to Tesco’s? Some philosophers think that visualexperience represents only a narrow range of properties, for instance, colour, shape, sizeand location properties, whilst other philosophers think that visual experience representsa much larger range of properties, including natural kind, artificial kind and semanticproperties. Philosophers in the first camp include Colin McGinn, Alan Millar and TylerBurge, and philosophers in the second camp include Susanna Siegel and ChristopherPeacocke. In this paper, I shall offer a new argument for thinking that the philosophers inthe first camp are right.I understand the notion of perceptual representation as follows. To say that avisual experience represents an object, x, as red, is to say that x looks red. Hence thecentral question of this paper concerns which properties objects can look to have—can an
For helpful comments and discussions, thanks to Tim Williamson, Rory Madden, Geoff Lee, HemdatLerman, Susanna Siegel, David Chalmers, Matthew Soteriou, Wylie Breckenridge, Anders Nes and BillBrewer.