Perception and observation unladened
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- Votsis, I. Philos Stud (2015) 172: 563. doi:10.1007/s11098-014-0319-7
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Let us call ‘veridicalism’ the view that perceptual beliefs and observational reports are largely truthful. This paper aims to make a case for veridicalism by, among other things, examining in detail and ultimately deflating in import what many consider to be the view’s greatest threat, the so-called ‘theory-ladenness’ of perception and/or observation. In what follows, it is argued that to the extent that theoretical factors influence the formation of perceptual beliefs and observational reports, as theory-ladenness demands, that influence is typically not detrimental to their veridicality or at least not irreversibly so. Central to the defence of veridicalism are two principles: that of internal similarities and that of internal dissimilarities.