Purpose and Procedure in Philosophy of Perception wrap-up workshop, November 16th

Our final workshop in our Purpose and Procedure in Philosophy of Perception project, funded by Cambridge New Directions in the Study of the Mind, will take place on November 16th at the Tetley in Leeds. Please email Heather Logue (h.a.logue@leeds.ac.uk) to register– attendance and meals are free, but space is limited!


11.15 – 12.30: Keith Allen (York), “Merleau-Ponty and Naïve Realism”

Abstract: This paper has two aims. The first is to use contemporary discussions of naïve realist theories of perception to offer an interpretation of Merleau-Ponty’s theory of perception. The second is to use consideration of Merleau-Ponty’s theory of perception to outline a distinctive version of a naïve realist theory of perception. In a Merleau-Pontian spirit, these two aims are inter-dependent.

12.30 – 1.30: lunch at the Tetley

1.30 – 2.45: Dan Cavedon-Taylor (Southampton), “Border Patrol”

Abstract: In cognitive penetration, what one believes (or desires, or expects, etc.) is said to affect how or what one sees (or hears, or smells, or tastes, or touches, etc.). Friends and foes agree on why the phenomenon is significant: if cognitive penetration ever occurs, then the cognition/perception border becomes blurred. I argue that there is an error in our current thinking about cognitive penetration insofar as this idea of a blurred border between cognition and perception is at best unsupported by, and at worst in tension with, current definitions of cognitive penetration. What such a blurring requires is a form of cognitive penetration that is non-causal and widely ignored by current definitions of the phenomenon: cognitive penetration via mental imagery. Thus, I offer fresh perspectives on both the terms of the cognitive penetration debate and mental imagery itself. Indeed, far from being a fringe case, cognitive penetration via mental imagery may be the only putative variety of cognitive penetration worthy of the name.

2.45 – 3.15: break

3.15 – 4.30: Heather Logue (Leeds), “Reflections on Purpose and Procedure in Philosophy of Perception”, followed by roundtable discussion

5.00: dinner at the Tetley


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